What To Ask When Choosing An Orthodontist

At Alborzi Orthodontics, we believe that educated patients make the best partners in any orthodontic journey! It’s our goal to help you feel empowered and informed from your first appointment to the last. Choosing to pursue orthodontic treatment is a big decision, and your smile is too important to trust to anything less than an experienced orthodontist. But what if you aren’t quite sure what to ask when choosing an orthodontist? 

We’ve put together this list of what to ask when choosing an orthodontist to help you make an informed decision on your care. Keep reading below for a more detailed look at what you should know before committing to an orthodontic practice for treatment!

Is the doctor a trained orthodontic specialist?

This may seem obvious, but it is the most important question you can ask when looking into braces treatment or clear aligner therapy. Some general dentists can provide orthodontic treatment, even though orthodontics wasn’t their specialty. 

A general dentist will typically offer common dental services such as crowns, fillings, dentures, and occasional orthodontic treatment like Invisalign. An orthodontist like Dr. Alborzi, on the other hand, spends their days providing only orthodontic services.

This distinction is incredibly important. Imagine that you or your child required specialized treatment or surgery. Would you feel comfortable with your family physician handling your case, or would you seek out a dedicated specialist? Orthodontists are essentially dentists who also have several years of additional specialized training and experience. This means an orthodontist has:

  • studied the growth and maturation of the teeth and jaw
  • been introduced to numerous case studies
  • developed diagnostic skills
  • learned biomechanical techniques to move teeth properly
  • studied how to change the development of the dental alveolar complex and facial growth of younger patients

Orthodontic residency programs are highly competitive, accepting only the top students in any dental school graduating class. These orthodontic programs tend to last around two to three years and include full-time training that focuses on correcting orthodontic issues with braces and aligners. While there are exceptions to every rule, most dentists will not possess this same level of exhaustive orthodontic training and experience.

Dr. Alborzi earned her B.A. in biochemistry from the University of California, Berkeley, and her dental degree from the University of California, San Francisco. She pursued an additional three years of training and education at the University of Connecticut, one of the top orthodontic programs in the country, earning both her Orthodontics Certificate and Master’s Degree in Dental Sciences.

What treatment options does the orthodontist offer?

Alborzi Orthodontics offers a wide variety of orthodontic treatments to patients of all ages in San Mateo and Half Moon Bay, including traditional metal braces and clear aligner therapy.

Invisalign clear aligners

Invisalign is a series of invisible, removable, and comfortable acrylic trays that straighten your teeth like braces. Not only are the aligners invisible, but they’re also removable, so you can eat and drink what you want while in treatment, plus brushing and flossing are less of a hassle. Dr. Alborzi has successfully treated hundreds and hundreds of patients with Invisalign in San Mateo and Half Moon Bay.

As an Invisalign Top 1% Provider, she is at the top of all Invisalign braces providers in North America! With this expertise, she can use Invisalign to treat a wider variety of patients, including many that others have told that Invisalign braces would not work for them.

Damon metal braces

Damon self-ligating braces are smaller, smoother, and more comfortable than traditional braces. Damon braces are made of high-grade surgical stainless steel that can straighten your teeth comfortably and gently, without the need for elastics or frequent adjustments or elastic ties. If you want to add a little flair to your braces, the option to add colors is still available. Damon braces also avoid the need for painful procedures such as tooth extractions, palate expanders, bulky appliances, and headgear.

Clear braces

Also known as ceramic braces, tooth-colored braces, or aesthetic braces, these work just like metal braces, with the added benefit of being much less noticeable in your mouth. Damon clear braces are an exceptionally comfortable and efficient treatment option. These self-ligating braces put continuous pressure on your teeth to move them gently, with greater control and less force than traditional options. The brackets are also smaller than conventional options, so they cause less irritation in your mouth, and they won’t stain during treatment.

How frequent are follow-up visits with the orthodontist?

Whatever treatment option you choose, you can expect relatively frequent visits to your orthodontist. For most patients, adjustment appointments will be scheduled for every 4-8 weeks or so in the office location most convenient for you. During these visits, Dr. Alborzi will replace any worn-out rubber bands, check the progress your teeth are making, and make adjustments to the wires to ensure the teeth are being pulled in the right direction. 

Patients wearing Invisalign clear aligners may be seen slightly less frequently, but these appointments are still an essential part of the orthodontic process!

While treatment time will always vary from case to case, the average patient will spend anywhere from 12-36 months years in treatment. You should be prepared to see us regularly! We know families these days are busy, and we value your time, so we never overbook patients and always aim to see you at your scheduled time.

Trust your smile to the experts at Alborzi Orthodontics

Are you looking for an optimal orthodontic experience? Alborzi Orthodontics is unmatched in skill, expertise, and the level of care every patient receives! Since our sole specialty is orthodontics, you’ll receive nothing but the best in treatments, cost, and efficiency as we work to straighten your smile.

If you’re ready to take the first step in your orthodontic journey, we would love to meet you and talk more about the smile you want! There’s never been a better time to go after the smile you’ve always wanted, so contact our San Mateo or Half Moon Bay office today to schedule your FREE consultation!