If you are considering orthodontic treatment for yourself or your child, the first step on that journey will be the initial consultation and exam. During this appointment the doctor will determine whether treatment is needed, and if so will develop a customized treatment plan based on your specific needs.
This is also the time to gather as much information as you can, so that if you do move forward with treatment you can do so confidently, knowing exactly what to expect during that process.
The following is a list of commonly asked questions that will help you get the most out of your initial consultation:
1. If I do need treatment, what are my orthodontic options?
There are many orthodontic treatment options beyond traditional metal braces, including ceramic braces and clear Invisalign® aligners. Your orthodontist will go over which options you are a candidate for based on your particular treatment needs.
2. How long will treatment last?
Orthodontic treatment can last anywhere from 6-36 months and will depend on your individual condition.
3. Will I need to wear headgear or other appliances to correct jaw issues?
Headgear is often used to correct bite issues such as underbite or overbite; whether this or other appliances will be a part of your orthodontic treatment plan will again depend on your specific needs.
4. How much pain or discomfort is involved?
While discomfort is usually mild to moderate and rarely occurs beyond the first few days after the initial banding and subsequent adjustments, you’ll want to discuss pain management options during your consultation to ensure you or your child remain as comfortable as possible in all phases of the treatment process.
5. How often will I need to come in for orthodontic appointments during the course of treatment?
Once your personalized treatment plan has been created, the doctor will be able to tell you how frequently you will need to come in for follow-ups or adjustments and approximately how long the visits will last.
6. How will braces affect my lifestyle?
Orthodontic treatment typically requires only minor lifestyle adjustments (such as avoidance of certain types of food or allowing extra time for brushing and flossing), but you’ll want to discuss any special activities you or your child are involved in to learn the impact, if any, that treatment may have on them.
7. How will I keep my teeth and mouth clean and healthy during treatment?
As alluded to in question six, brushing and flossing with braces will take a little getting used to and a little more time than before treatment. As such, you will learn how to keep your teeth and braces clean and will be guided to the best tools for the job during your consultation.
8. How much will my orthodontic treatment cost?
Like nearly every other aspect of orthodontic treatment, the cost varies between patients and depends on such factors as the type and length of treatment you’ll be undergoing. During your consultation you will learn the total cost of treatment, types of insurances accepted, and any payment plans or discounts that are offered.
Remember, the initial consultation and exam here at Vancouver Orthodontic Specialists, PLLC is always free to new patients, during which we will be happy to answer the questions listed here and any others you may have. If you haven’t already, you can contact us here to schedule your free consultation, or call us at (360)883-6713 between 8am and 5pm Monday-Thursday and 8am to 4pm on Fridays.