How to Choose an Orthodontist

Choosing an orthodontic practice to trust with the beauty of your smile or that of your child is an important decision. Orthodontic treatment has the potential to be a long process, so you’ll want to make sure you or your son or daughter is comfortable with the doctor and staff. Your orthodontic experience is something you’ll remember for the rest of your life, so make sure it’s something to smile about. Ask someone you trust for a recommendation.

Selecting an orthodontist may seem a daunting task for someone who has never been through it, so it’s a great idea to ask for a recommendation from someone who has. Whether it’s a friend, co-worker, or family member, that person will probably be more than happy to share a first-hand experience. Your general dentist is also a great resource to get a recommendation. If his or her children have had braces, ask which orthodontist they used.

Consider education and experience.

When thinking about braces for you or your child, remember that Orthodontists have two to three years of additional training in orthodontics after the completion of dental school. When choosing an orthodontist, find out about his or her educational background, where they went to school, and what kinds of continuing education or specialty training they’ve had. Before you set up a consultation with an orthodontist, make sure he or she is a licensed member of the American Association of Orthodontists. This ensures that the practitioner remains up to date on the newest and most effective clinical procedures.

It’s also important to feel comfortable with your orthodontist. Does the person have a pleasant chairside manner? Do you feel like he or she is really paying attention to your concerns? Is the staff friendly and helpful?

Ask questions.

During your consultation, don’t be afraid to ask questions. After all, that’s why you’re there! It’s important for you to understand what type of orthodontic issues you have and the most effective ways to treat them. The more informed you are about your own dental health, the better decisions you will be able to make.