First Visit

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Your first orthodontic appointment.Your first visit to our orthodontic office is an exciting time! It's a chance for us to get acquainted, and for you to learn about the treatments and services we offer. When you walk in the door, you may notice that our office looks similar to your regular dentist's office; what we do here, however, is a little different. It all starts with the initial examination.

You should plan to spend about an hour with us the first time. That's to ensure that no one has to rush, and that you get plenty of time to ask any questions you may have. You will meet one of our receptionists or patient coordinators, who will take some information from you and bring you through the office. Then it's time for the exam.

Let's Make a Plan

A big part of our job today is to determine what treatment is necessary to correct any problems we may find — and whether we should begin now, or wait until a later time. You will meet with our treatment coordinator and our doctor. Our doctor will complete a very thorough intraoral examination at this time. We may also take a preliminary panoramic x-ray if needed.  This enables us to see what's going on underneath the gums: the position and growth of bones and joints, and the teeth that are still below the gum line.

Besides looking in the mouth, we may also ask questions, such as whether the jaws make noise when the mouth is opening or closing, or if there are any problems chewing or swallowing. We also take great care to answer any questions you may have about all available treatment options at this visit.

Discussing Your Treatment Options

Following the exam, we may tell you that things are just fine — or, we may recommend treatment. Treatment might begin right away or at a later time, depending on the developmental stage of the teeth and jaws. Many times, we'll advise you to return for a periodic checkup, until we determine that it's the best time to start. Now that we have a treatment plan, we will also explain what our fees will be, and what payment options are available.

Whether you're starting now or later, this is the best time to ask questions about the process. We can talk about available treatment choices, answer general questions about what to expect at the different stages of the process, and discuss any of the following:

Can orthodontic treatment benefit me (or my child)?
What general procedures will be used to correct the problem?
Are any options available (or recommended) for my treatment?
Should I get treatment now, or is it better to wait?
Will tooth extraction be necessary?
How much does treatment cost? Are payment plans available?
How long do you expect treatment should take?
When you leave our office, we think you'll have a better understanding of how we can help you get the best possible smile. So why not take the first step now — call us for an examination!

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