You’ve decided to undergo orthodontic treatment to improve your smile. What now?
Your journey towards a beautifully straight smile is an exciting one. So to get you started, we’ve answered a few questions you might have before you come and see us. You can visit us at either of our Toukley or Wahroonga practices and we will customise the right treatment plan for you and your teeth.
Do I Need A Referral?
You do not need a referral from a dentist to see an orthodontist. All you need to do is call our office to arrange a suitable appointment for your initial consultation. Your dentist can also provide you with a referral.
When you initially contact us to arrange your consultation, we will send you a referral to have radiographs taken prior to your visit.
What happens during my first consultation?
The first time you visit us with your orthodontic concerns is very important. Your initial 30 minute appointment will consist of a thorough examination and a discussion of potential treatment options. A full dental and orthodontic history is taken and a complete clinical examination is carried out. We will also view X-rays which we will organise for you to bring along to your appointment.
Following your consultation and examination, we will provide an assessment of your concerns, with the treatment options that will give you the best possible result. The cost of the treatment will also be discussed at this time. We will also talk about whether or not this is the best time to begin treatment, or if further growth and development is needed.
A written report will be sent to both yourself and your general dentist to summarise the orthodontic problems and the treatment recommended. A letter explaining the financial details, item numbers and payment procedures will accompany the report to you.
What do I need to do after my first consultation?
During your initial consultation, we will have determined whether or not you are ready to begin orthodontic treatment. If further growth and development is necessary before starting treatment, you will be placed on our recall list so we can monitor this until the appropriate time to commence treatment. Recall appointments are complimentary and may be carried out every 6-12 months. You should maintain routine check-ups with your dentist while on orthodontic recall.
If a decision is made to proceed with treatment, the next step would be for us to obtain additional information (“take records”) to thoroughly determine the extent of the orthodontic problem. Diagnostic records usually include impressions, photographs and radiographs. Radiographs are usually collected and analysed during the initial consultation. Impressions are needed to obtain accurate plaster models of the teeth and dental arches so that we can measure their relationships to one another. Photographs and radiographs will be used to determine where the imbalances and problems are and where to move each of the teeth within the upper and lower jaws. The “records” visit is usually goes for about twenty minutes with one of our qualified hygienists.
Your next visit will be to fit your appliances. Depending on what type of appliance you will be having fitted, the appointment time will range from ten minutes and one hour.
What happens during my follow up Appointments?
Once treatment has commenced the majority of appointments are of a shorter duration, approximately five to ten minutes each at six or eight weekly intervals. These shorter appointments are normally scheduled outside school hours, however, we are happy to schedule these at other times.
Some longer appointments will be needed, for example when the appliances are fitted and removed, or when more complicated adjustments are performed. These longer appointments are normally scheduled in the middle part of the day.
So that we are able to run to schedule, if you are more than 15 minutes late for any of your appointments, they will need to be rescheduled.
How can I make sure that my treatment is successful?
Successful orthodontic treatment can only be achieved with your co-operation. That is why we work with you to make sure you understand each part of the treatment. We are always available to answer your questions and keep you updated on treatment progress.
There are so many elements that go into creating beautiful smiles, and we pride ourselves on making the process exciting, comfortable and effective. If you have any questions about beginning orthodontic treatment, one of our experienced and friendly team members will be able to help you. You can also view our FAQ page for more answers to your questions.