Knowing what to expect at your first visit to the orthodontist can go a long way towards calming the anxiety of patients (children and adults) and even parents! Young patients may not know what an orthodontist is or does. They have often heard scary stories from friends about braces hurting or being "tightened," and they may be worried that they'll get braces right away and that the process will hurt. Adult patients are often nervous because they're still not sure what options they'll have, and they're still wondering whether they want to wear braces as an adult. "Why am I here? Am I really going to go through with this? Is it weird for an adult to wear braces?" (Spoiler alert - it's not!) And parents are frequently nervous about having sticker shock because of their preconceived ideas about braces being expensive.
Rest assured that most of these concerns aren't worth the anxiety they cause, and I'm hopeful that learning about the new patient process in our office will help! When you attend your first orthodontic visit, here's what you can expect:
- You'll be greeted by one of our staff members! One of our staff members will welcome you to the office and give you a tour. We'll show you everything you need to know to feel comfortable in the office. Once you've started treatment, often the orthodontist's office can start to feel like home! Once you've gotten settled, we'll be sure that you have completed all the new patient paperwork necessary. If you've printed this in advance or filled it out online, you may already be done!
- Our treatment coordinator will take photographs and x-rays of your teeth. We take a series of photographs of your teeth and face to be used by the doctor during diagnosis and also as a visual aid for you to use when discussing your treatment options. Sometimes it's much easier for you to see and identify problems with your teeth in pictures when compared to simply viewing them in the mirror. In addition, we always use a panoramic x-ray (one large view that shows all your teeth).
- One of the doctors will examine your teeth and bite and discuss your treatment options with you. Dr. Bethany or Dr. Liz will sit down with you and discuss your treatment needs, answer questions, and give you options for treatment, explaining the pros and cons of each option and giving you time to decide what's right for you.
- Our treatment coordinator will explain scheduling and financing treatment. Our treatment coordinator is here to do exactly that - to help you coordinate the details involved in starting treatment! She will review the total amount of your investment in treatment, help you understand how much your insurance will assist, and give you plenty of payment plan options. We are extremely flexible when it comes to financing your treatment because we know that everyone's budget is different, and we don't want that to get in between you and the smile of your dreams!! Next, she'll help you schedule any appointments needed to start your treatment. Sometimes, if time permits, you may have the option to start your braces the same day!
One of our primary goals is to make your experience with orthodontic treatment comfortable and enjoyable! We're here for you along the way and we're always available to answer questions. We're looking forward to your first visit - and we hope you are too!!