FAQ

At what age do you start seeing patients?

We get this question a lot.  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.  This does not mean that every patient begins treatment at this age.  Actually, fewer than 20% of these patients really need our help (and it could be something simple like a space maintainer).  So, please do not hesitate to take advantage of our complimentary (FREE!) consultations.  Our goal is not only to straighten teeth, but also to educate parents and children to help them plan ahead for things like 1) missing teeth, 2) consequences of thumb-sucking, 3) jaws that don’t line up, 4) severe overlapping of teeth, 5) severe overbites, etc.

Do you charge for an initial visit?

No.  Many times, the initial visit is simply an educational one in which we meet our patients and create a plan of action.  Young patients may need to return later, after specific baby teeth have fallen out, while adult patients may  need to first complete treatment with their general dentist before proceeding with orthodontics.  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.

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 for younger patients 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, accounting for roughly 40% !  New, more cosmetic appliances are making adult treatment much more comfortable and convenient.  Ask to see our library of ‘before and after’ photos of beautiful smiles!

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 8 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 retainers need to be worn after braces?

YES!  Retainers should be worn approximately 8 hours each day (most patients wear them to bed) for as long as you want your teeth to remain straight!

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.