Do you charge for an initial visit?
We feel professional advice from experienced doctors regarding your health care has value and should be recognized as such. While the initial visit for children and teenagers are free, we charge a $90 fee for adults, who often have more complex issues.
At what age do you start seeing patients?
As a rule of thumb, we like to evaluate young patients after the 6-year molars erupt and the front permanent teeth just start to appear. This is usually between the ages of 6 and 8. The American Association of Orthodontists recommends that all children be seen for the first time by age 7.
Why do you evaluate patients so young?
The purpose of early evaluation is to identify developing problems that may, if left untreated, lead to a more involved, complex and difficult set of problems to correct with a more invasive treatment plan in later years. Children have tooth alignment and bite problems that are often evident at an early age. While many of those children can still have an excellent outcome by waiting until the teen years to begin treatment, for some of those children the best outcome results from an early phase of treatment followed by a second phase of treatment in the teen years.
How long will the first visit take?
The first visit is usually between 30 and 45 minutes depending on how complex the issues are and what the different treatment options may be. We will complete our examination, note all of our findings and recommendations in the electronic record and explain those findings and recommendations to you and answer any questions you might have. We may also suggest one or more X-rays to allow us to provide you with the information you require.
Do you take patients transferring from out of town?
Yes we do. We handle a patient transferring into our office from another city just like a new patient. We perform our examination, note all of our findings and recommendations in the electronic record and explain those findings and recommendations to complete the work that has been started. We do not accept patient transfers from local orthodontists.
Do you have any adult patients?
Absolutely. A growing percentage of our patients are adult and one of Dr. Osterman’s sub specialties is comprehensive team dental care for adults. New, more cosmetic appliances are also making adult treatment much more comfortable and convenient. Learn more here.
What is the difference between an orthodontist and a dentist?
An orthodontist is a general dentist that has had at least 2 more years of full-time training in orthodontics resulting in a nationally accepted specialty certificate. An orthodontist then limits their practice to straightening teeth and correcting bites. While general dentists are allowed to perform orthodontic treatment there is a substantial difference in their level of training and experience relative to an orthodontist.
Can I make all my appointments in the afternoon after school and late in the day?
In order to have early and late appointments available for the majority of patient appointments, some of the longer procedures need to be accomplished during the hours of 9 and 3. We will do our best to work with your schedules and accommodate your family needs.
Do you see patients for emergencies?
Can we make payments?
Yes. Whether or not you have insurance or a dental plan, we will structure a convenient payment plan that will allow you to pay for orthodontic services over a period of time that usually coincides with your treatment plan. Learn more here.
How do you handle insurance?
As a courtesy to you we will verify your coverage, we will bill and post payments from your insurance carrier. However, while we provide value and service to our patients by assisting them, we ask patients to understand that insurance is a contract between them and the insurance company and the responsibility for accurate information, payments and continuity of coverage is theirs. The patient is still responsible for the agreed upon fee regardless of whether the expected insurance company coverage is paid or not.
Do you take American Express, MasterCard and/or Visa?
Yes, we accept all major credit cards.
Do you have direct debit?
Yes, we have arrangements for direct debit and direct charge card posting.
Do you charge interest?
No we do not.
Do you give family discounts?
Yes, we have a family care discount for multiple patients from the same family.
If I need to be pre-medicated for the dentist, do I need to be pre-medicated for the orthodontist?
Yes, but only for certain procedures, not for all appointments.
Do retainers need to be worn after braces?
Yes, retainers are worn full-time for about 3 months followed by nighttime wear indefinitely.
Why do teeth get crooked after wearing braces or aligners?
Teeth move throughout life whether you have worn braces or not. It is part of the natural aging process. This is why retainer wear is recommended indefinitely to maintain your orthodontic results over your lifetime.