Our greatest goal is to give you the healthy, beautiful smile you’ve always wanted. We understand that choosing to receive orthodontic care is a big decision, and we're here to answer any questions you may have along the way.
Every smile starts with an initial examination!
Your initial visit to our office is an opportunity to get to know you! We will take a medical/dental history and either Dr. Loucks or Dr. Buren will do a complimentary clinical examination (just looking at your teeth; nothing will hurt!).
If your initial appointment is in our Newton office, we will also take digital photographs of your face and teeth. The doctor will determine if there are any conditions that orthodontics can address and whether you are ready to begin treatment.
Sometimes the doctors advise that treatment be delayed until appropriate growth or tooth eruption have occurred and you will be placed in our observation program. This means you will return to our office periodically so we can follow your development and begin treatment at the appropriate time. There is no charge for these observation visits.
What happens after the initial exam?
If treatment is indicated or more information is needed, the next step is to take diagnostic records. For patients who come to our Newton office for their exam, we reserve time in our schedule to take records at this same visit.
For patients who choose to visit our Grinnell office for their exam, a separate records appointment is scheduled in the Newton office. Complete diagnostic records include digital photographs of your face and teeth, two digital orthodontic X-rays, and an intraoral scan of your teeth to produce digital study models (no more goopy impressions!). The doctors use this information to develop a customized treatment plan for each patient.
There is no upfront cost for records, as this is eventually included in our treatment fee. If you decide you do not wish to pursue treatment with our office at that time, a fee will be assessed to cover our expenses.
After Dr. Loucks and Dr. Buren have evaluated your records, you will have a consultation appointment with the doctor to discuss your treatment in detail, including infomation about specific treatment procedures, length of treatment, cost of treatment, and payment options. This is a great time to ask questions! It’s imortant to us that you fully understand your treatment options and are actively involved in achieving a healthy, beautiful smile!
We have put much effort into designing our scheduling system to allow you to be seen on time for your appointment and do all necessary scheduled treatment. This makes appointments as stress-free as possible for you and minimizes interruptions to your busy schedule.
Please understand that your longer appointments (diagnostic records, initial bracket placement, repair of broken appliances, and removal of braces) will be scheduled during the morning and early afternoon hours. Once appliances are placed, we will see you every four to eight weeks for “adjustments” to your braces, which take 20 to 40 minutes.
These appointments can be done any time during the day, and we reserve the after-school hours for these shorter procedures. This allows us to accommodate more families, and children will miss less class time. Our practice is happy to work with you to make sure your appointments are as convenient as possible.
We understand that “life happens”! If you're running late or need to reschedule, please let us know and we will do everything we can to accommodate you. If you or your child are too sick to attend work or school (or are contagious), we will be happy to rechedule your appointment for when you are feeling better. We want you to be comfortable and ensure a safe and healthy environment for our patients and staff.
Visiting the dentist during orthodontic treatment
It is very important that you continue to visit your family dentist once every six months for teeth cleanings and routine dental checkups, even during your orthodontic treatment. If extra dental care is needed, we will be happy to coordinate with your family dentist to make sure you receive the best possible care.