Learning to Take Better Care of Your Family's Teeth

4 Questions To Ask An Orthodontist Before Your Child Gets Braces

If you've recently been told by a dentist that your child will likely need braces in the near future, one of the first steps you'll want to take is to schedule consultations with a few trusted orthodontists in your area. This will not only allow you to get a second opinion on your child's need for braces but will ultimately help you decide on the orthodontist that is best suited for your child's needs and your schedule.

As you meet with each orthodontist, there are a few important questions worth asking.

How Long Will Treatment Take?

One of the most common questions parents and children have about getting braces is "how long will they need to be worn?" This can vary greatly from one patient to the next, though most children who get braces will have them anywhere from one to two years. An orthodontist will be able to give you a better idea of how long treatment will take after a thorough office consultation and exam.

What Exactly Does Your Estimate Include?

It's no secret that braces can be costly, so requesting a detailed estimate from an orthodontist is always a good idea. Make sure to find out exactly what's included in this estimate as well as what might cost extra. Most orthodontic estimates for braces, for example, will include all routine appointments and hardware.

If your child breaks a bracket/wire, however, this repair may cost extra. You'll also want to find out whether or not retainers are included in your cost estimate, and, if so, which type of retainers the orthodontist uses.

What Are Your Appointment Hours Like?

Because many parents have to juggle their child's school schedules and their personal work schedules, it's important to find out what appointment hours are available at your orthodontist's office so you can make sure they'll work with your own busy life. Many orthodontist's offices have early morning and occasional evening hours to accommodate patients in this regard, but it's always good to ask.

Have You Treated Similar Cases Before?

Any reputable orthodontist should be able to provide you with some "before and after" photos of patients who they have treated with similar orthodontist issues in the past. This will help you get a better idea of what you can expect to see from your own child's treatment and will ultimately help you to make the decision regarding which orthodontist is right for you.