What Happens at Your First Orthodontic Appointment?

Orthodontic Treatments and Services in Grand Rapids, MI

Choosing to pursue orthodontic treatment offers a lifelong benefit to your oral health. Straighter teeth are not only more aesthetically pleasing, but they’re also easier to clean and maintain. However, it can be intimidating to see our Grand Rapids orthodontists for the first time.

At Armbrecht & Wierenga Orthodontics, we want our patients to feel confident in their decision to seek treatment from the moment they set foot in one of our offices.

Here’s what you can expect to happen during your first orthodontic appointment.

1. Fill Out Paperwork

All new patients will need to fill out paperwork that asks questions about their medical history, dental insurance information, and how they want their smiles to look after treatment.

Filling out your medical history is important for many reasons. For example, if you have a latex allergy or a history of poor sleep quality, our orthodontists may modify treatment recommendations accordingly.

Related PostWhy Do I Need Orthodontics?

To streamline your visit, we will mail your new patient paperwork to you so you can fill it out before you arrive. If you prefer to fill out everything in the office, be sure to arrive 15 to 20 minutes early so you have enough time. Patients under 18 years old will need to be accompanied by their parents or legal guardian during their first appointment.

Don’t Forget to Check Your Insurance

We highly recommend you check with your dental insurance prior to your visit to see if they cover orthodontic treatment for juniors, teenagers, or adults. If you’re unable to identify your orthodontic insurance benefit, we can help you determine what coverage you have when you’re at your first orthodontic visit.

2. Meet Our Orthodontists

At your first appointment, our orthodontists will examine your face, teeth, gums, and bite to determine what issues (if any) need to be fixed with orthodontic treatment. Depending on the position of your teeth and jaws, our orthodontists may determine that you:

  • Need treatment immediately
  • Will need treatment in the future
  • Don’t require treatment at all
  • Will need tooth removal or a palatal expander to create more space in the mouth

After your first visit at our office, you will know what treatment we recommend, estimated costs, feelings or sensations you may feel after the braces or Invisalign® aligners are put on, and approximately how long we expect treatment to last.

Read MoreHow Long Will I Have to Wear Orthodontic Braces?

Pediatric Orthodontic Considerations

If the visit is for your child’s teeth, then your first pediatric orthodontist visit will be a time for our orthodontists to evaluate the growth of your child’s jaws and the space available for teeth that still need to grow in. The age of the patient and the condition of their teeth and bite will determine the best time to begin treatment.

3. X-Rays & Pictures

Yes, photographs and X-rays are necessary for our orthodontists to take and subsequently analyze so a proper treatment plan can be developed. Don’t worry, the process of obtaining these pictures or X-rays doesn’t take long and will not cause you or your child discomfort in any way.

Ultimately, X-rays can reveal to our orthodontists any problems that may not be apparent at first glance. For example, unerupted teeth, jaw joint problems, issues with jaw structure, and airway dimensions can all be assessed by looking below the surface.

Schedule Your First Appointment

Our orthodontists in Grand Rapids, MI, always strive to help patients achieve their best smiles by offering quality orthodontic services. If you are interested in setting up your first appointment, call Armbrecht & Wierenga Orthodontics today at (616) 455-4800, or contact us online.

This blog post has been updated.