FAQ

Do you charge for an initial visit?

No. As a courtesy to you and your family dentist, we will always discuss the feasibility of braces or tooth straightening without charging a fee for the initial consultation.

What is the difference between an orthodontist and a dentist?

An orthodontist is a general dentist that has had at least 2 more years of full-time training in orthodontics resulting in a nationally accepted specialty certificate. The orthodontist then limits their practice to straightening teeth and dentofacial orthopedics.

All orthodontists are dentists, but not all dentists are orthodontists. So, what is the difference between an orthodontist and a dentist?

Orthodontics is a specialty to Dentistry such as Cardiology is to Medicine. An orthodontist is a dentist that has further specialized with additional Post-Doctoral years of training  in his/her field of practice. In other words, our practice is limited to the practice of orthodontics (straightening teeth) and Dentofacial Orthopedics. Why is my dentist then offering me Braces or Invisalign? Here is where it can get confusing, In this case, the dentist is widening his/her scope of procedures and offering to perform orthodontic treatment but do not have a “Specialty training”

Back to the example of the Cardiologist a patient would logically seek a trained doctor in  Cardiology to perform treatment as opposed to a family doctor.

What differentiates treatment by the 2 practitioners is training, exposure and experience. During the 2-3 years of compulsory residency training we concentrate in Orthodontics and orthodontics only. An orthodontist focuses his/her scope of treatment to procedures only related to orthodontics based on a solid knowledge of Dentistry as previously attained before becoming an Orthodontist.

Orthodontics-Only-and-Dentistry-Kendall

An orthodontist really does have the unique set of skills to get you the best result in the most efficient way possible.

At what age do you start seeing patients?

As a rule of thumb, we like to evaluate young patients after the 6-year molars erupt and the front permanent teeth just start to appear. This is usually between the ages of 6 and 8. The American Association of Orthodontics recommends that all children be seen for the first time by age 7.

Why do you evaluate patients so young?

The purpose of early evaluation is to inform and observe, more than to start treatment. At this early age, the eventual needs may be identified and discussed. A small percentage of this young group may need some form of intervention. Habits are evaluated, medical issues are discussed and an observation schedule is arranged until the patient is ready to begin treatment.

How long will the first visit take?

The first visit can last anywhere between 30 minutes and 1 hour depending on how ready the patient is for treatment. We may just do a visual exam and explain the situation or we may suggest one or more X-rays and complete diagnostics including impressions of the teeth with photographs to document the current position.

Do you take patients transferring from out of town?

Yes we do. We handle a patient transferring into our office from another city just like a new patient. We gather complete diagnostic records to show the current status and propose treatment to complete the work that has been started.

Do you have any adult patients?

Absolutely. A growing percentage of our patients are adult. New, more cosmetic appliances are making adult treatment much more comfortable and convenient. Learn more here.

Can I make all my appointments in the afternoon after school and late in the day?

In order to have early and late appointments available for the majority of patient appointments, some procedures need to be accomplished during the hours of 9 and 3. We will do our best to work with your schedules and accommodate your family needs.

Do you see patients for emergencies?

Yes, our contact information for an emergency is posted on the website. Feel free to visit our emergency care page for more information.

Can we make payments?

Yes.  Whether or not you have insurance or a dental plan, we will structure a convenient payment plan that will allow you to pay for orthodontic services over a period of time that usually coincides with your treatment plan. Learn more here.

How do you handle insurance?

After verification of coverage, we will agree to bill and collect from an insurance carrier. However, we ask patients to understand that if coverage ceases or changes, the patient is still responsible for the agreed upon fee.

Do you take American Express, Master Card and/or Visa?

Yes, we accept all major credit cards.

Do you have direct debit?

Yes, we have arrangements for direct debit, charge card posting, as well as payments over the internet.

Do you charge interest?

No we do not.

Do you give family discounts?

We have special programs and fees for multiple patients from the same family.

Do I need to be pre-medicated for the dentist. Do I need to take my medicine for the orthodontist?

Yes. Specially if you have been recommended to do so by your physician. Periodically you should 

Do retainers need to be worn after braces?

Yes, retainers are worn full-time for about 3 months followed by nighttime wear indefinitely.

Why do teeth get crooked after wearing braces or aligners?

Teeth move throughout life whether you have worn braces or not.  It is part of the natural aging process. This is why retainer wear is recommended indefinitely to maintain your orthodontic results over  lifetime.