Your First Orthodontic Visit
Welcome to Alpan Orthodontics, where we look forward to creating a life-long friendship with you, your family, friends and business associates. If you have never been to an orthodontist, then you may not be aware of what to expect at your first visit. There are several steps outlined below to guide you through this easy process. We would love for you to take a look at the other pages of our website so that you can become familiar with Alpan Orthodontics and the products and services that we offer.
The First Step
At Alpan Orthodontics, our viewpoint is that we are not just about treating bite problems or moving teeth with various types of appliances, but that we are about treating people – children, teens or adults. Therefore, our first step is to find out more about you and your specific concerns and expectations regarding your teeth or your child’s teeth, smile and facial appearance. Once we are aware of your wants and needs, we can explain how we can help you achieve your goals.
The Second Step
The second step is your FREE ORTHODONTIC CONSULTATION. When you arrive at AO we will give you a guided tour of our office so you may become familiar with it and feel at home during the course of your treatment. After the tour is done, we will introduce you to our receptionists. During your consultation, Dr. David Alpan examines your face, teeth, jaw joint and the relationship of your lower jaw and teeth to your upper jaw and teeth to determine if immediate treatment is required. If no treatment is required then regular yearly visits with the dentist will be recommended. If there is a need for orthodontic treatment then it will be discussed and explained in detail and we move on to step three.
Sometimes, very young patients, beginning with age five, don’t need immediate orthodontic treatment. Dr. Alpan can recognize early dental and facial growth irregularities. Early Phase One orthodontic treatment from age seven to nine can guide your child’s growth and development, which may prevent the need for extraction (removal) of permanent teeth (adult teeth). If Phase One treatment is not needed, we’ll place your child in our RECALL SYSTEM, a FREE SERVICE we provide as a courtesy to you, so we can monitor his or her growth and development in order to minimize future problems. If treatment is necessary, we move on to the third step.
If he finds that you have TMJ/TMD signs or symptoms, he will recommend a TMJ/TMD Exam for a more thorough examination. For some patients, a TMJ/TMD problem requires treatment before orthodontic treatment can begin. After these problems are fixed, we move onto the third step.
The Third Step
After a treatment plan is agreed upon, our Treatment Coordinator will review everything with you in detail. She will also help you set up the most comfortable payment plan to meet your needs. Upon signing the contract for your treatment, she will take you to the Records room for the fourth step in this process. She will introduce you to our Records Technician.
The Fourth Step
We need records of what your condition is before we can begin treatment. Typically records include diagnostic photos, radiographs (x-ray photos) and impressions. The impressions are used to make stone “study models” showing the position of your teeth in your upper jaw and lower jaw. These records confirm the doctor’s diagnosis and treatment plan and serve as documentation of the position of your teeth and profile before you start orthodontic treatment. Records are also done after your treatment is completed. We save you time and money because you do not have to travel to another facility for Records.
The Fifth Step
Please take the “Safe-to-Start Treatment” letter to your general dentist. If you don’t have a dentist, we will refer you to one near your home or workplace. You may need fillings or gum treatments to get your teeth and gums healthy before we can begin your orthodontic treatment or your TMJ/TMD treatment.
Your general dentist will sign the “Safe-to-Start Treatment” letter only after he or she has finished getting your mouth healthy in preparation for treatment by Dr. Alpan. When we receive the “Safe-to-Start Treatment” letter from your general dentist, we may begin your treatment.
We want your first visit – and all visits for that matter – to be relaxed, comfortable, fun, entertaining and enjoyable. Your first visit is designed with your final visit in mind. We want you smiling…