Though both dentists and orthodontists help their patients to take better care and enhance their oral health, they do it differently. While dentistry is a very wide medical field which specializes in teeth, the jaw, gum and nerves; orthodontics happens to be a smaller field within the dentistry department whose main focus is on occlusion, correction of bites and straightening of teeth.
The most interesting thing about the two is that while all orthodontists are trained and qualified as dentists, not all dentists are certified orthodontists. This means that while any qualified orthodontist can work in a dental clinic offering the same services as a dentist. The following are some of the main factors to consider when looking for a reliable orthodontist in Manchester and in the UK.
1. Credentials and Work Experience
In order to get the best orthodontic services, you need a qualified and highly skilled orthodontist. Therefore, it is important to find out credentials and work experience of any orthodontist whose services you want to get. Their minimum qualifications should be a Bachelor of Dentistry as well as a Master in Orthodontics, besides being a registered member of the relevant and recognised medical professional bodies.
2. Range Of Treatment Alternatives
The recent developments and advancement in orthodontic know-how can only mean that there is an array of treatment alternatives to choose from. You may not need all the options but the initial consultation should help you to choose the options that can be most beneficial to you before commencement of any treatment. It is also advisable to check out the orthodontic clinic’s website so as to have a hint of the options of treatment are on offer, before booking for consultation. This equips you enough to be able to ask informed questions during the consultation.
3. An efficient Support Team
As much as your orthodontist will take responsibility of your overall treatment process, they can’t everything alone. At any given time, a qualified orthodontist works with a team of experts, from dental nurses to orthodontic therapists, hygienists to treatment co-ordinators. Each one of these experts plays a vital role during the process of your orthodontic treatment. It is therefore important to find out who will be in the team that will handle your case and what their qualifications and experiences are.
4. Past Successes
It would be advisable to check out the “before and after” photos of the patients they have treated in the past. Most experienced orthodontists will always such photos on their website, together with previous patient testimonials. If these photos are missing on the website, you can ask for them at the reception. This helps you to gauge whether their quality of services is what you need.
5. Cost and Financial Implications
Quality orthodontic treatment doesn’t come cheap. However, most of the orthodontic experts are quite understanding and hence offer reasonable payment plans which can make the cost manageable. Therefore, before you embark on your orthodontic treatment, you need to ensure that you get a complete quote from the clinic, detailing all the costs involved. As much as some orthodontic clinics may provide some of their initial costs on their official websites, you need to bear in mind that each orthodontic case is unique and hence likely attract a different cost.
It is always imperative to carefully consider all the above factors before you settle on a reliable orthodontist. As much as the orthodontic specialist next-door might be quite convenient in terms of making appointments, the quality of services offered must come first.