We recognize that everyone leads busy lives, and we do our very best to see patients on time as scheduled.
Before your first visit, we will send you an introductory email to welcome you to our practice. We will also send you paperwork to complete, including dental and medical questionnaires. One day prior to your first visit, you will receive a confirmation call from our treatment coordiator.
Your first visit will be approximately one hour, during which time you or your child will have orthodontic photos and, if indicated, x-rays taken. The orthodontist will complete a comprehensive exam and discuss with you any orthodontic issues, and the potential for orthodontic treatment at that time or in the future.
If treatment is recommended, the orthodontist will explain the reasoning for the decision, optimal timing of initiating treatment, and review the plan of treatment.
If starting treatment should be delayed, the orthodontist will schedule a follow-up visit in three to 12 months. Postponing treatment is often advised to allow further eruption of adult teeth or to allow further jaw development.
When should you schedule your first visit at Westwalk?
A key to successful orthodontics is deciding on the optimal time to start treatment. The American Association of Orthodontics recommends that children see an orthodontist for an initial consultation at seven years old. In our practice, we typically prefer to see patients at eight years of age.
The vast majority of eight-year-olds are not ready for treatment, but a brief exam enables us to evaluate the eruption of the permanent teeth, loss of baby teeth, and any other potential discrepancies in the bite that may need to be monitored or addressed. This first appointment provides a baseline for the orthodontist to be able to monitor the permanent teeth as they erupt in future visits, as well as growth and development of the upper and lower jaws.
On the other end, we find that patients often wait too long to see an orthodontist. Please do not delay in scheduling a consultation until all the baby teeth are lost. Also, please do not delay seeing us until all the adult teeth are in your mouth. At that point in time, potential orthodontic treatment options may be limited, because the peak of jaw growth will likely have passed.