When you decide to invest in orthodontic care—and it is an investment in health and wellbeing—it’s important to make sure that you, or your child, are receiving the best possible care from the right specialist. Knowing how to choose an orthodontist isn’t easy. Just like you wouldn’t go to a general practitioner if you needed heart treatment, you don’t want to end up with the wrong practitioner for your orthodontic health. Here are some of the most important things you can consider, and do, when you’re searching for the right specialist to treat your orthodontic needs.
- Get a list of local orthodontists in your area.
Before you call the first number you find online for an orthodontist, look for a list of orthodontists in your area. Some orthodontic specialists have even more distinct sub-specialties, so make sure to do your research. Orthodontists who are members of the Texas Association of Orthodontists (TAO) are committed to community service and innovation. You should choose the one who will work best with your schedule, budget, and specific needs. The TAO website is a great resource to start your search. After that, a deep dive into the offices’ websites along with referrals from family and friends is a great way to make your choice.
- Be vigilant when researching orthodontic specialists.
Getting the best care possible for your orthodontic needs means carefully considering your options, including the orthodontic specialists you’re considering to care for you. Researching is critical to ensure that the specialist you are hiring is actually an orthodontist and not a general dentist who is offering orthodontic treatments. Orthodontic residency prepares doctors for this specialization far above and beyond that of general dentistry. Only a certified orthodontist who has the additional formal training of a specialist should provide orthodontic care.
- Make sure the orthodontic specialist can meet your unique needs.
As previously mentioned, some orthodontists have sub-specialties or areas of interest in addition to orthodontia. If your child requires early interceptive orthodontics, you’ll need to work with an orthodontist willing to provide care to younger patients. And if you’re interested in invisible cosmetic braces, you’ll want to ensure your orthodontic specialist has plenty of experience offering this treatment and seeing it through to success.
- Make sure the cost and payment terms of your treatment work for you.
Quality orthodontic care is affordable. Every orthodontist has different payment terms and plans. Many doctors can customize your payment plans to fit your budget. Don’t be afraid to ask for friendly terms. Remember that you are making an investment in your or your child’s health as you research orthodontic treatment.
Beyond beauty, quality orthodontic care has health benefits that will last a lifetime. You have the power to make the best decision for your complete oral health, and it starts with choosing the best orthodontic specialist for you. Good research and sticking to your plan—for the care and value you want and need—will help you find the right orthodontist to help you get the smile you want.