Most people are keen to take steps to find the best general dental practitioner for themselves and for their family, but the fact is, there are certain areas of dental and oral care that require a dental specialist – including an orthodontist.
There are specific problems that many people of all ages may have that are best dealt with by a local orthodontist. Primarily, though not exclusively, these have to do with tooth misalignments, an improper bite, or a malformed jaw that needs to be guided in its future growth.
A good local orthodontist can benefit your whole family – teens and adults too, not just kids. But you want to make sure you choose the right one. Here are five key criteria to use in making that important decision!
1. Credentials, Experience, & Skill Set
There’s no way to get around it. The core factor that must be considered first when choosing a local orthodontist to rely on for years to come is competency. You don’t have to wait until you sit in the exam chair to get a good idea about whom you can trust.
Look for basic clues like the fact that your orthodontist has successfully completed dental and orthodontic school and has completed a residency program.
Also, see if the orthodontist has become board-certified in Florida – (this is not an absolute requirement, but it’s a good sign.) And if the candidate is involved in a continuing education program, even better.
Experience is at least as important as educational background. Find out how long a local orthodontist has been doing what he or she does. Be sure your orthodontist has all the necessary skills and adequate experience so you can feel confident when you sit in the exam chair!
2. Look For A Wide Range Of Offered Services
Although orthodontics is a specialized area of dental care, you probably aren’t looking to go to a different orthodontist for every procedure that becomes necessary over the years. So you want a specialist, but not someone who specializes only in certain aspects of orthodontic care.
There are two ways to look at the range of services. First, you want the option of such things as traditional metal braces, clear braces, Invisalign, or other clear aligner trays, expanders, and more. You also want someone who can handle headgear, TMJ, or other jaw conditions, and anything else to do with tooth and jaw misalignment (malocclusion) problems.
The second aspect, however, is age-based. It’s easier if you can use a single orthodontist for your whole family. Try to find a local orthodontist who is accustomed to seeing kids, teens, adults, and even seniors.
3. Be Alert To The Facilities & Look For Up-to-date Methods
If you get far enough that you schedule an appointment with a local orthodontist to see if they are right for you, take down some mental notes (and maybe paper ones too!) during your initial visit.
Even on the initial phone call, you will already be looking for a friendly, professional kind of establishment. When you visit in-person, your first impression will be even more distinct.
But beyond customer service concerns, you should also be looking over the facility. Is it comfortable? Clean? Up to date? Is the orthodontist familiar with all the latest treatment methods and do they have state-of-the-art equipment?
4. Take Time To Discover Each Local Orthodontist’s Reputation
Reputation is basically where the rubber meets the road in selecting the best local orthodontist. Others took note of factors #1 through #3 (above) and decided on that particular orthodontist in the past.
Were they happy they did so? How many long-term patients does the orthodontist have and how pleased are they with the service they have received?
One way to find out is by looking at online patient reviews. You can look both on and off of the candidate’s website. And you may also want to see if they have a BBB score or a rating from another professional organization.
If you know someone personally who already uses or has used that orthodontist, that will make the search easier. But you definitely have to pay attention to local reputation.
5. Don’t Forget Practical Matters!
Finally, you also have to look at “practical matters” like precise location, affordability, and ease of scheduling.
You want the best orthodontist, but insofar as it’s possible, you also want the best with the highest level of convenience. These kinds of practical matters may limit your search range, but they will also make it easier to make a decision.
For those in the Central Florida Area, Dr. Beauchamp of LeCompte & Beauchamp Orthodontics is a reliable, local orthodontist whom many in Port Orange and surrounding communities routinely trust.
To learn more about LeCompte & Beauchamp Orthodontics, feel free to contact them today for a free initial consultation or to schedule an in-office appointment!