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Learn How To Choose The Best Orthodontist For Your Child

It’s highly likely that the day will come that you, your child, or multiple children in your family will need braces. When it does, you will need to locate an orthodontic specialist to put them on and provide the associated care.

Orthodontists are dentists who specialize in straightening teeth and aligning jaws. Following dental school, they typically receive two or more years of orthodontics training in an American Dental Association accredited program.

Gather recommendations

To find an orthodontist for you or your child, start by asking others for recommendations—your dentist, neighbors, friends, family, coworkers, and anyone else whose opinion you trust.

The American Board of Orthodontics website lists orthodontists certified by the American Board of Orthodontics, the only certifying board recognized by the American Association of Orthodontists and the American Dental Association. The American Association of Orthodontists website also includes a tool for locating member orthodontists near you.

Narrow your options

What criteria do you use to narrow down your short list of candidates? Here are some things to take into consideration:

  1. Is the provider covered by your insurance?
  2. What are the provider’s payment policies
  3. Do the provider’s office hours work with my schedule?
  4. Is the consultation free?

Ask questions

When you meet with your provider for the consultation, be sure to ask questions about the care you will receive. Here are some suggestions:

  1. Is this the only option?
  2. How urgent is the need for this treatment?
  3. Will there be additional expenses?
  4. What is the length of this treatment?
  5. What follow-up care will I need?
  6. What aftercare do I need to do at home?

Upon this initial visit make sure that you and your child feel comfortable with the provider and his or her staff. Do they listen to you and answer your questions? Do you feel that they listen to you and your child?

Be sure to check with your dental plan for orthodontics benefits information. If you don’t have dental insurance, you may find buying it will save you money.

Braces are an investment, and you will be putting a lot of time and money—as well as yours or your child’s smile—into them. Finding a provider you can that meets your financial needs and with whom you feel comfortable is important. Good luck with your search!

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