7 Common Mistakes with Choosing Orthodontists and How to Avoid Them
May 3, 2023

About three in five people hate how their smiles look! Meanwhile, most people (76%) base a first impression of someone on their smile alone. Improving your smile with orthodontic treatment can help you make a good first impression with a stunning, straight smile.

Before visiting a professional for treatment, make sure to avoid these mistakes with choosing orthodontists. Otherwise, you could choose someone who lacks the experience and expertise you need.

Read on to begin building a list of options for orthodontists today!

1. Never Reviewing Credentials

One of the biggest mistakes you can make when choosing an orthodontist is neglecting to do your due diligence. Research each orthodontist on your list to confirm they have the proper education, training, and credentials. 

You can start your search by using the American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) online directory. Talk to coworkers, friends, family members, and neighbors in Raleigh, NC, too. Ask if they can recommend a local orthodontist.

Use Healthgrades.com to learn more about each orthodontist on your list. Consider where they completed their education and training. Remove them from your list if they didn’t graduate from an accredited institution.

Make a note of when they graduated. Professionals with years of hands-on dental care experience can lend their expertise to your orthodontic needs. Confirm these orthodontists have continued their education over time. 

Professionals who have continued their education remain informed about new:

  • Technologies
  • Treatments and procedures
  • Trends

An orthodontist who neglects to continue their education might use outdated techniques or technologies. They might lack the training to use new technologies or offer up-to-date treatment options. 

Confirm each orthodontist on your list has an active license to practice in North Carolina.

Once you confirm the orthodontist is educated and licensed, determine how long they’ve practiced in North Carolina. There are over 91,100 orthodontists in the US. Some have worked in the industry for decades.

Finding someone with the proper credentials can help you feel more confident in their abilities to develop a customized treatment plan based on your needs. 

2. Choosing Based on Location

Don’t make the mistake of choosing an orthodontist because they’re near your home or work. Instead, do your research to make sure they have the necessary qualifications and experience.

Finding someone who is conveniently located can help if there’s an emergency. You’ll need to schedule regular appointments throughout the span of your treatment, too. Try to find a practice located within 30 minutes of your home or work.

Make sure to consider the rest of these qualities before making a final decision, though. 

3. Not Considering Services

Before narrowing down your options for orthodontists, review each practice’s services and treatment options. Look for practices that offer more than one treatment option.

When most people think of orthodontic treatment, they imagine metal brackets and wires. However, traditional metal braces are only one treatment option. If your orthodontic issues aren’t too severe, your orthodontist might recommend clear aligners with Invisalign instead. 

Invisalign treatment is ideal for both teenagers and adults. They offer the discretion traditional metal braces can’t.

During your consultation appointment, talk to the orthodontist about the treatment options they recommend. Ask if they use the latest technology to improve every aspect of the orthodontic process. Practices that use the latest treatment options can offer a higher standard of treatment.

4. Failing to Read Reviews

Before choosing an orthodontist, make sure to read online patient reviews. Reading online reviews can help you find a reputable, trustworthy orthodontist in Raleigh. Reviews can also indicate which practices you should avoid. 

Look for complaints about the orthodontist’s professionalism and bedside manner. You might find comments about scheduling issues or long wait times, too.

If the practice has a high number of complaints, remove them from your list. 

5. Never Scheduling a Consultation

Schedule a consultation appointment with three orthodontists in Raleigh before beginning treatment. Meeting each orthodontist in person can help you find someone you’re comfortable around. Before the appointment, draft a list of questions you want to ask about their:

  • Credentials
  • Experience
  • Expertise
  • Treatments
  • Safety standards
  • Equipment

Use this meeting to fill any gaps in your online research. 

6. Waiting Too Long

Don’t wait too long to visit an orthodontist. The longer you wait, the more severe your orthodontic issues could become. The duration of your treatment plan could take longer than expected. 

Treatment could also become more invasive and expensive if you delay treatment.

Early intervention is important if you’re seeking treatment for your children. While they’re young, their jaws are still in development, making treatment easier. Delaying treatment could cause more serious problems to develop. 

7. Not Considering Costs

Before making your final choice, compare orthodontic treatment costs between three local practices. Comparing orthodontic treatment costs can help you determine the average cost of treatment in Raleigh. 

Don’t choose a practice based on pricing alone. Instead, choose someone with the experience and expertise necessary to provide the care you need. A cheaper orthodontist might have fewer resources or a smaller office, causing longer wait times.

Avoid These Mistakes With Choosing Orthodontists

Learning to avoid these common mistakes with choosing orthodontists can help you find a professional you can depend on. Look for an experienced orthodontist who already has a strong, positive reputation among other Raleigh residents. With these tips, you can start improving your smile with help from a qualified orthodontist. 

Want to streamline your search? We offer the highest standard of orthodontic care to our patients. We’re here to help you find a beautiful, healthy smile.

Contact us to schedule your next appointment today.