What Is the First Orthodontist Appointment Like? | Louis F. Mascola, DDS
What the First Orthodontist Appointment Like by Torrance, CA Orthodontist Dr. Louis F. Mascola.
What Is the First Orthodontist Appointment Like?
If a patient comes in for the first time, there’s no charge, whether it’s an adult or children, and we just do the evaluation if they need orthodontics or not. If they don’t, and there’s a possibility, if it’s a child, that they may cost me in the future, we’ll do what we call a six-month recall.
If they don’t need anything, we’ll just tell them they don’t need anything. And if they do need something, then we’ll have some x-rays taken, which is in 3D. We have a 3D X-ray unit. It’s called an i-CAT, and that allows us to see things in 3D, where most of the other times, it was just basically what we call a Pantograph which really didn’t give us depth. And when we’re moving teeth, we’d like to see what’s around the teeth, how much bone you have to work with. And so the i-CAT has been a big factor.
Once I get to see what’s available for me to work with, then you start during the treatment planning. And if there’s not enough space to do anything, then yes, we’ll take teeth out. If there’s sort of a problem a little bit with not enough space, if we can do a little, what we call interproximal reduction, just by polishing the teeth, then we know how much we can take off each tooth, and we can figure out if we have enough space to do that.
Then once we do that, and we explain it to the patient, we take some photos because we’re interested in profile, front as well as side. And a lot of times, we’re-- if there is going to be a problem with profile, you have to consider taking teeth out, or it might be a surgery case. Then you try to explain that to a patient and let them make the decision.
They have to have a clearance from their physician for health and also from their regular dentist for-- not to have any periodontal problems. With some periodontal problems, if you do have a periodontal problem, you can do some corrections with Invisalign where it’s not going to be as detrimental as brackets. Then once they get the clearance from their general dentist, no cavities, periodontal condition is acceptable, then we can start.