After you have chosen an orthodontist and have approved his or her preliminary care plan, your treatment process will begin. This does not mean, however, that you will be getting braces during your first few appointments. The first step in the process is creating a set of orthodontic records which will help your provider make an accurate diagnosis and develop changes to your treatment plan.
Orthodontic records usually consist of the following:
Examination – Your orthodontist will perform a more thorough exam than you had during the initial consultation. He or she will document information about your teeth, gums and jaw. In addition, your orthodontist you review your dental and medical histories in order to understand how any previous treatments or medication regimens may affect your braces.
Molds – Impressions of the upper and lower teeth are vital for the planning process. After first making a plaster impression, some orthodontists have the plaster models scanned digitally, which provides an accurate reproduction of the model which is essential measurements and storage.
X-rays – You may have two different types of x-rays during you initial appointments. A panoramic x-ray will give your orthodontist a full view of your upper and lower teeth and provide information about the presence of extra or impacted teeth. A cephalometric x-ray can inform your doctor about the postilion of your jaw and provides a baseline to monitor movement and growth.