Finding A San Diego Orthodontist
So you’ve just begun considering finding an orthodontist to improve your smile or family member’s. Orthodontics has come a long way and goes beyond just straightening teeth, there are many things to consider. Sculpting a beautiful smile involves a skilled orthodontist who can make your mouth’s bite work in harmony with its new smile. Finding the right orthodontist or knowing when to start are some of the few hurdles in the beginning. Here at Align Orthodontics, Dr. Henry and staff are passionate about not just straightening teeth, but creating smiles for the people of San Diego who leave our office with increased confidence and self-esteem and overall happiness. Let us help you get started.
There Is A Difference Between A Dentist And An Orthodontist
According to the American Association of Orthodontists (AAO), an orthodontist is a specialist who has two to three years of additional education, and is an expert in straightening your teeth and choosing the treatment option that’s best for you. Orthodontists are dentists that specifically limit their practices to orthodontics and dentofacial orthopedics. As dental specialists and facial development experts, orthodontists go through a rigorous training process that requires two to three additional academic years upon graduating from dental school and completing an accredited orthodontic residency program. The level of training and competitiveness is very high when it comes to mastering the biology of facial structure and physics of teeth movement. This means more advanced dental care for you because orthodontic treatment is what they focus on, and all that they focus on. Finding a specialist who is a member of the AAO will ensure you have a properly trained orthodontist.
Getting Started With Braces or Invisalign Treatment
Some think getting started with an orthodontic specialist requires a referral from a general dentist, however, that is not the case. A majority of patients that come into our office in Poway are not referred by a general dentist, but instead, are recommended to us through friends and family throughout San Diego who have had positive experiences with Dr. Henry and his staff. In fact, Dr. Henry is the preferred San Degio orthodontist for dentist’s family members throughout Poway, Rancho Bernardo, Scripps Ranch, Rancho Penasquitos, and surrounding areas. Throughout the years he has treated over 40 DDS or DDS family members and has built a reputation for knowledgeable and personalized orthodontic care in San Diego.
While orthodontic treatment can be done at any age, there is a window of time for braces that is best to achieve results that utilize most conservative techniques possible. Some procedures involving issues such as cross bites or teeth crowding causing narrow jaws may require compromises and face difficulties if started too late. This is why early evaluation by an orthodontist is advised to reduce complications.
For kids, the American Association of Orthodontists recommends that all children should be evaluated no later than age 7 to see if braces or intervention is needed. By this time, determining if developmental issues will need to be addressed can clearly be seen. Earlier intervention that this is usually not necessary. Detecting these issues early can result in quicker treatment time and a less pain experience from oral complications.
Don’t get caught up thinking orthodontic treatment is just for kids. In fact, Align Orthodontics treats many adults each year, many of whom are discovering the vast improvements to their health, social life, self esteem, and careers as a result. There are treatments that are completely appropriate for adults that aren’t as noticeable, such as Invisalign treatments which are a clear, invisible alternative to metal braces.
Long Term Commitment
Finding a committed orthodontist is important as well as knowing how long treatment will take. Orthodontic treatment can range from about 2 – 2.5 years of active treatment, followed by an additional 1 – 2 years of retention treatment. It’s not usual to think about, but finding an orthodontist who is just as committed to staying in their practice and always serving the same location is crucial. Otherwise having to switch practices make increase treatment time and produce undesirable results. Dr. Henry has been an orthodontist for over 30 years and focuses on serving his one orthodontic office in Poway, as opposed to multiple offices throughout San Diego. This means he is more readily available to see you for regular and emergency visits.
We encourage you to do your research, ask friends, and come in for an in person consultation to get to know us better. We’re confident you’ll discover what many happy patients already have.