You should be aware from the outset that orthodontics is a team effort. The team is comprised of us -- the professionals at Forest & Ray—and you, the patient and /or the parent of the patient in the case of a child. So, it is important that during the consultation you have all your questions answered about the proposed treatment plan. Where possible, when treating your children, we find it very helpful to have both parents present for the consultation so that all interested parties can participate. Understanding what will be required to straighten the teeth, how long the braces will be on the teeth, and what retainers will be needed requires good communication so that we can succeed together. That brings us to the kind of questions that most patients, or parents of patients, ask.
Typical First Questions to Ask Your Dentist
If you’re like most patients, you are results orientated. So among the first questions often asked is: ---How long will the treatment take?
- Can you show me what my smile will look like after the braces are removed? And, related to that:
- Can you show me some before and after photos?
After this, you may be more motivated about the treatment’s potential and that will usually encourage more specific questions.
Additional Questions a Patient Is Likely to Ask
- What orthodontic options do I have? (if available and relevant to your situation)
- What are the pros and cons of the options available to me?
- How long will the treatment take, and what will be the timing between visits?
- What can I expect during the treatment period, and:
- What changes will I have to make in my daily habits or routines (e.g. with foods, chewing)
Another question that is usually foremost in patients’ minds but which can crop up at any time during the consultation is the issue of the cost of the orthodontic procedure being considered or that is being recommended. Sooner or later, patients ask:
Occasionally (and not at all rude), a patient or parents of a patient might be inclined to pose some deeper, personal questions to the dentist. But, not everyone is as probing. Still, you might want to ask:
- Can you tell me about your background?
One of the important things to ask an orthodontist in an interview is about his or her background. Ask about the orthodontist’s education. He or she should have completed three additional years of orthodontic specialty training. Keep in mind, the level of education and the orthodontist’s amount of experience can vary. Find out more about the orthodontist’s background by asking:
- Where did you go to dental school?
- Where did you complete your orthodontic specialty residence?
- How long have you been practicing?
When you come to us at Forest & Ray, you needn’t be afraid to ask any questions which are on your mind. We believe that an educated, relaxed, confident, and comfortable patient is a happy patient and the best patient.