Setting up your first new patient exam with an Orthodontist can be an exciting and sometimes stressful experience. But there’s no need to fear. I’m going to walk you through the entire experience from walking in the front door to scheduling your next appointment to hopefully ease your mind about the entire process.
Step 1: Walk in the door. This will be the hardest part of your whole experience. Once you have set up your appointment and made it into the building our welcoming staff will get the ball rolling with some brief paperwork.
Step 2: Photos and Xray. Once the Treatment Coordinator has been informed you are are finished with your paper work and ready to begin, she will call the patient back to the X-ray room where to will have a panorex (or full mouth X-ray) taken along with some photos of your teeth. Both of these steps are not painful and only require you to stand still for a short period of time. A panorex allows the Orthodontist to see where the root of each tooth is which helps him come up with a treatment plan specifically for you.
Fun Fact: wisdom teeth and teeth that have not erupted yet can be seen on a panorex too.
Step 3: Consult with Orthodontist. The treatment coordinator will lead you to a room with a dental chair and extra chairs for parents or family members who come to the appointment. After the Dr has taken time to look over your records and make a treatment plan (if necessary) he will come in the room to go over it. This is the time to ask any questions about treatment you may have.
Step 4: Financial Consult. Once you are comfortable with your treatment options the Treatment Coordinator will go over multiple financing options that you will be able to go home with.
The whole New Patient Consultation appointment will last about an hour and should leave you feeling confident about your options.
We are emBRACing the basics with today’s word of the day: BRACE.
BRACE is defined as device that clamps things tightly together or that gives support.
BRACES are just that for your teeth. Individual BRACES are (temporarily) cemented to each tooth by an orthodontist. There are three main components of each orthodontic BRACE:
- Base: flat surface that sits on the tooth
- Slot: opening in the middle where the wire sits
- Wings: four arms that hold the tie that keeps the wire in place
BRACES come in two color choices silver or clear. Silver braces are easily recognizable and used my the majority of patients. Clear braces offer a more attractive option and usually cannot be seen in pictures of patients wearing them.
Braces have come far in the past decades are more comfortable and attractive than ever. There’s no need to dread the pain and suffering of getting orthodontic treatment anymore!
Packing for a vacation can be exciting and sometimes stressful when you are trying to remember what not to forget. When you have orthodontics appliances such as braces, Invisalign, or retainers its best to be prepared with a few extra supplies. We’ve put together a list of what you should carry with you to make sure you have a enjoyable trip away from home!
TOOTHBRUSH: because its super important to brush your teeth after every meal when you have braces.
FLOSS and THREADERS: to prevent irritated gums and bad breath.
PROXY BRUSH: (aka: christmas tree brush) to be sure your not that girl/guy with a hunk of bread between your front two brackets.
WAX: in case something starts poking. (ask for some extra at your last appointment before your trip)
In the unlikely event that you have an orthodontic emergency during your vacation such as: a broken bracket, loose wire, broken Invisalign tray or retainer call our office as soon as possible and we will walk you through solving the problem or direct you to someone close by who can help get you comfortable until you get home.
Enjoy the sweet summer time and take care of your teeth!
T. Michael Brooks, Jr. D.M.D., M.S. was raised in Nashville, TN graduating from Montgomery Bell Academy before attending and graduating from Washington and Lee University in Lexington, VA with a Bachelor’s degree in European History. While in college, Dr. Brooks was elected President of his Senior Class, played NCAA intercollegiate baseball, and was selected for Who’s Who in American Universities and Colleges. In addition, he was the Director of the Department of Country Music for the university radio station.
Dr. Brooks moved to Birmingham, AL to attend the University of Alabama School of Dentistry. During his four years of dental school, Dr. Brooks was elected Student Body President and was involved in several activities such as volunteer research work in the Biochemistry Department at UAB and the “Special Smiles” program for the physically-challenged.
After receiving his Doctorate of Dental Medicine from the University of Alabama School of Dentistry in 2001, Dr. Brooks decided to specialize in the field of orthodontics. He pursued a three-year post-doctoral master’s degree in Orthodontics at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. While in his residency, Dr. Brooks focused his master’s thesis on the accuracy and acceptability of digital dental models versus plaster dental casts. His thesis was selected for publication in The Angle Orthodontist. During his third year of residency, he took and passed the written exam for American Board of Orthodontics certification. In June, 2004, Dr. Brooks completed his residency in Orthodontics.
Dr. Brooks resides in Birmingham and is married to the former Leslie Denton of Birmingham, AL. They have four sons, Wyatt, Carter, Miller, and Denton. They are active members of Covenant Presbyterian Church where Dr. Brooks serves as a deacon. Dr. Brooks’ interests include coaching youth athletics, golf, hunting, fishing, college football and music.
William Greg Rape, D.D.S., M.S. received his undergraduate degree from the University of Florida in 1982. He then attended Emory University School of Dentistry in Atlanta where he received his D.D.S. degree and graduated first in his class with highest honors. In 1989, Dr. Rape completed a three-year postgraduate orthodontic residency at UAB School of Dentistry and was awarded a Master’s Degree for his extensive orthodontic research.
Dr. Rape is a Diplomate of the American Board of Orthodontics, a prestigious award only a small percentage orthodontists ever achieve, and was voted as one of America’s Top Orthodontists by the Consumer Research Council.
Dr. Rape has served as a clinical professor in the Department of Orthodontics at the UAB School of Dentistry and as president of UAB Orthodontic Alumni Association. He is an active member of the American Dental Association, American Association of Orthodontics, Southern Association of Orthodontics, and Alabama Dental Association
Dr. Rape and his wife, Melissa, live in the Trussville area and attend Church of the Highlands at Grants Mill. He has four precious children; Kristen, Andrew, Kelsey and Anna. Dr. Rape enjoys reading, oil painting, CrossFit, traveling and just spending time with family.