Here at Beim Orthodontics, it’s important to us that every potential patient feels informed, empowered, and excited about the orthodontic journey ahead of them! The road to the perfect smile begins with knowing exactly what to expect from the treatment process, and the very first step is finding an experienced orthodontist. You only get one smile, and it’s too important to trust to anyone less than an expert!
Achieving a beautifully aligned smile is an investment of your time and your finances, so it’s important to choose an orthodontist you trust. With so many providers available, finding the right one for you can be a bit of a challenge. To get your search off on the right foot, we’ve put together this list of important questions to ask before making an informed decision about your orthodontic care! Keep reading below to learn more about what you should know before committing to a particular practice.
Is the doctor you’re considering an orthodontic specialist?
Since this entire blog is about choosing an orthodontist, you may wonder why a question like this is even necessary, but it’s actually one of the most important things you can ask! That’s because there are some general dentists who also offer certain orthodontic services, like clear aligners.
While most dentists tend to focus on traditional dental services and cosmetic treatments, others have branched out into straightening smiles. There’s nothing inherently wrong about this, of course, but a general dentist will usually lack the extra years of education and training orthodontists have had in safely and successfully moving teeth. Their practice is also split between dental and orthodontic services.
Orthodontists, on the other hand, have usually spent at least ten years learning how to guide facial development and manage tooth movement with braces, aligners, and other orthodontic appliances. Their sole focus is on creating beautiful, functional smiles for patients of all ages, and they’re able to track your progress throughout the treatment process.
Take Dr. Beim, for instance! He earned his Doctorate of Dental Surgery from New York University College of Dentistry, where he was inducted into the Omicron Kappa Upsilon Dental Honor Society. After several years as a Navy Dental Officer, Dr. Beim returned to school to earn his Certificate in Orthodontics from Fairleigh Dickinson University College of Dentistry.
From 1980 to 1992, Dr. Beim served as a U.S. Navy Dental Officer. He was active duty from 1982-1988 at the Naval Regional Dental Center in Norfolk and the Naval Training Center in Orlando, as well as aboard the USS Shenandoah (AD-44). While attached to the US Naval Reserve, he served in the Brooklyn Navy Yard and with the 24th Dental Company of the U.S. Marines in Little Creek, Virginia.
Dr. Beim opened Beim Orthodontics in 1990 and has been recognized as one of Orlando’s top dentists for many years since then. You can be sure you’re putting your smile in the best possible hands when you choose our practice!
Do you offer a complimentary consultation?
Another important question to ask when choosing an orthodontist is if their practice offers complimentary consultations. Many orthodontic offices will provide a free assessment of your smile before beginning the treatment process, including Beim Orthodontics! This initial visit will often include digital photographs and x-rays of your teeth, an orthodontic exam, and a discussion about the options available to you.
When you schedule a consultation with us in our Lake Mary office, you’ll be greeted warmly and asked a few questions about your medical and dental history. After taking several digital photographs and x-rays of your smile, you’ll be introduced to Dr. Beim just before he begins your oral examination. The information we gain from the images we obtain, your history, and your exam will give Dr. Beim everything he needs to determine if treatment is indicated for your smile.
What treatment options are available?
When deciding on an orthodontist, ask them to explain what treatment options they have available to you. Gone are the days when a full set of metal braces was the only way to straighten your smile—modern orthodontics has made it easier than ever to improve your oral health with a variety of treatments to suit every lifestyle. We’re proud to offer the following options for a smile makeover you’ll want to share with everyone around you!
Traditional metal braces
Traditional metal braces are consistently the most popular treatment option, and with good reason. They have a long track record of efficiency in treating cases from simple to complex, and deliver excellent results. The brackets are made from a durable mix of stainless steel and affixed directly to the front of the teeth with a wire running through them. Today’s braces are more comfortable, effective, and aesthetically pleasing than they’ve ever been, and you can even inject them with a pop of personality thanks to colored elastics!
Clear braces function the same way metal braces do, but instead of metal brackets, they use semi-translucent or tooth-colored ceramic brackets to blend in better with your natural smile. This provides patients with a super subtle way to straighten the teeth, particularly when paired with clear, white, or tooth-colored wires and elastic ties.
Although ceramic braces are strong like metal braces, the material they’re made of does tend to be a bit more prone to chipping or cracking. They also tend to be slightly more costly than metal brackets. For these reasons, we generally recommend these braces for our older teen and adult patients only.
Invisalign clear aligner therapy
Invisalign is an innovative alternative to braces that uses a series of clear aligners to straighten the teeth instead of brackets and wires. The trays are made of a soft thermoplastic resin and custom-designed to fit snugly but comfortably over your teeth. Because they’re designed to be removable, Invisalign aligners offer patients a bit more freedom and flexibility.
Patient compliance is an important part of Invisalign, and the aligners need to be worn for 20-22 hours per day throughout the treatment process to be successful. Patients must also switch each aligner out for the next in the series every 1-2 weeks depending on the treatment plan. This is what allows them to keep up with the movement of the teeth. For most patients, Invisalign can straighten teeth just as well as braces do!
Not all treatment options are appropriate for every case. When you visit our office, Dr. Beim will take the time to create a personalized treatment plan that’s based on your specific smile needs and goals.
Find your best smile with the experts at Beim Orthodontics
Are you ready to take the first step towards the healthy, happy smile you deserve? We’d love to meet you and walk you through everything our practice has to offer. Our talented team is committed to providing exceptional care in a stress-free environment, so get in touch today to schedule your FREE consultation. A brand new smile is waiting for you!