If you were born with less than perfectly arranged teeth, chances are that your dentist may refer you to an orthodontist for a comprehensive exam. The orthodontist team will conduct a thorough evaluation to assess your dental issues and provide a treatment plan to correct and enhance your natural smile. Several key steps are essential to the process, and fortunately, they can be done at your convenience.
Orthodontic work often begins with a referral from the family dentist. This may stem from a routine dental checkup or from a newly developing problem, such as painful wisdom teeth, that needs to be addressed right away. An appointment can be scheduled with an orthodontist to evaluate the potential benefits of orthodontic treatment.
Most orthodontists start with a visual oral examination of the mouth and dental structures. Findings will be compared to the dentist’s records that have been forwarded based on the patient’s previous dental work.
Tests and measurements.
Panoramic X-rays and mouth measurements, as well as an assessment of the soft tissues, including the gums and upper palate, for example, will be made. Teeth that have not yet erupted will be noted, along with teeth that are missing, tipped, chipped, or cracked. Prior treatment that may include caps, crowns, or bridges will likewise be evaluated, along with any special conditions that play a role in the patient’s oral health, dental health, and smile.
If the orthodontist believes that treatment can address specific orthodontic problems, a treatment plan will be developed and discussed. Often, this includes the patient being fitted for braces consisting of wires and brackets. This can help to shift teeth to gaps caused by missing teeth for a streamlined dental appearance. Crooked teeth can be pulled upright, while twisted teeth can be rotated back into correct position. Teeth that remain embedded in the gums or upper palate can be removed or pulled into place by related procedures.
Many dental health plans cover part of the orthodontic treatment. However, the patient may need to pay part of the cost. This can be arranged in several ways. A dental credit plan might be available, and orthodontist office staff can explain how it works. A personal credit card or savings are additional options. Some patients can simply write a monthly check until the balance is paid in full.
Within a relatively short amount of time, you can have a beautiful new smile that makes you look and feel great. Your confidence may soar, allowing you to share smiles generously and receive them in return. Orthodontists not only restore dental health; they also enhance facial cosmetic appeal.