At any one time in the United States, approximately 4 million people are wearing braces. Braces are an effective way to straighten crooked and misaligned teeth, suitable for children and adults alike. Braces also help to fix bite issues, improve speech, prevent bone erosion, prevent tooth decay and gum disease, and more. If you are interested in braces for yourself or your child, it’s helpful to understand what the process looks like. In this blog post, your expert team at Ello Orthodontics will focus on the initial orthodontist appointment and what you can expect from it.
Here, we will take you through each step. This includes meeting the team, touring the office, discussing your medical and dental history, undergoing an orthodontic exam, taking X-rays and impressions, and discussing your orthodontic treatment options. Let’s get started!
Meet the Team
Here at Ello Orthodontics, we are big believers in creating a welcoming environment for our patients. Dr. Nguyen and her team are committed to ensuring that every one of our patients feels relaxed and comfortable throughout every visit. This starts with an initial introduction to our amazing team and a tour of our office and its facilities.
It’s estimated that around 36% of Americans have a fear of dental treatment, while a further 12% suffer from extreme fear. Even if you or your child is nervous about their first visit, rest assured that we do everything to make your visit as pleasant and enjoyable as possible!
Medical and Dental History Review
Once you are all settled in, we will begin with a review of your or your child’s medical and dental history. This review is beneficial for a number of reasons, including confirming that you or your child is healthy enough for orthodontic treatment. Dental history provides information about prior dental surgeries and any routine dental work that has previously been completed.
All of this information, along with the orthodontic exam and X-rays that follow, will help us to understand the most appropriate treatment option for you or your child. In some cases, for example, additional dental treatment may be required before orthodontic treatment can begin.
The next step during the initial orthodontic consultation is to conduct an orthodontic exam. This allows us to see if there are any issues that aren’t covered in your or your child’s dental records. For example, it may be necessary to fill in a cavity before braces that be put in place.
This exam is performed using dental tools, which allow us to closely examine your, or your child’s teeth and gums. There is no need to be nervous or anxious about this exam, and we will keep you fully briefed about what we are doing.
This process will be very similar to examinations you or your child has experienced during a routine dental checkup. During this process, we will also take photographs, which will help us in determining the best course of action in terms of orthodontic treatment.
If you have any questions about your dental health or orthodontic treatment options, feel free to ask us at any time. We are always happy to answer your questions and allay any concerns you may have.
X-Rays Are Taken
Another vital part of the initial orthodontic consultation is to take X-rays. While a visual examination will allow us to gain a strong understanding of your or your child’s oral health and requirements, a large part of a tooth’s mass is hidden beneath the gums (two-thirds, in fact). That’s why it’s so beneficial to have X-rays of the teeth taken.
X-rays show details of both the lower and upper teeth, allowing us to identify issues such as gum disease and tooth decay, and also get a clear picture of the exact location of teeth and how they can be maneuvered using braces. There is no need to be afraid of these X-rays as they are completely pain-free and simple to take.
Impressions of Bite
If it is determined that orthodontic treatment is necessary, impressions of your or your child’s bite will also be taken. These impressions serve a number of useful functions.
For one, they are another useful piece of information for the diagnostic record. Also, in conjunction with the X-rays and photographs, they help us to develop an appropriate treatment plan for your or your child’s specific case. Impressions require you to bite down on a putty-filled tray; again, this is a quick and easy step.
Discussing Treatment Options
During the initial consultation, we will also discuss potential treatment options. Today, there are many different types of braces to choose from, including:
- Clear aligners (such as Invisalign)
- Metal braces
- Ceramic braces
- Lingual braces
- Self-ligating braces
Each option comes with its own pros and cons, though all are highly effective at straightening misaligned teeth. Depending on your or your child’s specific case, we will be able to recommend the most suitable option.
What To Expect From Your Orthodontic Consultation Appointment
The above information highlights what you can expect from your first orthodontic appointment. Dr. Nguyen and her team, as noted above, are always happy to answer any questions that you may have at any point during this appointment. We want you (or your child) to feel completely relaxed with us.
We are proud to serve Pearland, Pasadena, Friendswood, South Houston, and surrounding areas. Contact us today and schedule your initial consultation. We look forward to helping you realize your dream smile!