Orthodontic Treatment Transfers
July 2, 2014
Orthodontic Treatment Transfer Q &A with Bakersfield Orthodontist Dr. Jared R. Gianquinto DMD, MS
Families sometime have to relocate during orthodontic treatment, and that brings up a lot of questions! Dr. Jared R. Gianquinto, DMD, MS, your Bakersfield orthodontist has the answers!
We would love it if all of our families could stay in one place for the entire duration of orthodontic treatment, but relocations happen. Families move, and usually the move is far enough that finishing treatment with their original orthodontist just isn’t practical. Luckily, we handle transfers of treatment all of the time. Most of the time we can pick up right where the original orthodontist left off and finish up treatment with minimal interruption. If you’re considering switching orthodontists for whatever the reason, the American Association of Orthodontists has a transfer form that gives the new orthodontist the original findings, treatment plan and summary of progress notes that helps keep treatment moving in the right direction. Every orthodontist has different ways of straightening teeth, different staff, different offices, different locations, and different additional services they offer. As a result, treatment fees vary from place to place, and office to office. In our office, our fees are based on levels of complexity and types of appliances needed.
Every orthodontist has different eyes and different ways of achieving the same end result, even with the same schooling and training. There are also many different systems of braces, wires and methods of moving teeth. Think of any road trip. There are lots of ways to get to your destination, but the driver may be a lot more comfortable taking one route over another. Now imagine having to find a new driver in the middle of the trip. First, you have to find a new driver you’ll feel comfortable driving your car. He or she will have the same destination in mind, but might be more accustomed to a different kind of car, and might want to take different route that could take longer, but be safer, have less traffic, etc. No matter how you look at it, switching drivers in the middle means the trip will take longer. Switching orthodontists is the same thing. Invariably, orthodontic treatment will take a few months longer than the initial estimate by the original orthodontist if the treatment must be finished by another provider. Every orthodontist has different ways of straightening teeth, different staff, different offices, different locations, and different additional services they offer as well. As a result, treatment fees vary, and treatment will most likely be more expensive overall if a transfer is necessary.
During my orthodontic residency at Temple University, we were fortunate enough to be trained in just about every contemporary orthodontic system available, and even some more antiquated ones! This not only allowed us to determine what systems worked best in our hands, but also to address the reality of transfer patients. Some bracket systems and methods of tooth movement are more efficient than others, and while they might look the same, braces actually have specific prescriptions built into them to help teeth move where they are supposed to go. In certain situations, the braces may have to be replaced with what we use here in our office to get the best results in the shortest amount of time.
We’re going to miss you! And don’t panic. Every patient that starts treatment with us is provided with our transfer policy and the formula we use to balance your account with us before you leave. Sometimes there is a small fee, sometimes a refund. Every situation is different and we’ll be happy to work with you! We also know a lot of good orthodontists around the country with similar systems in their offices. Chances are we can make a recommendation to make the transition as seamless as possible.
We’re moving to Bakersfield in the middle of treatment! What do we do?
We’d love to meet you! And again, don’t panic. Be sure to let your original orthodontist know you’re leaving, and get copies of the original treatment records before you move if you can. Once you’re here, give us a call for a free consultation. We’ll take a look and see what needs to be done to get to the finish line, how long it will take, and what the fee will be. It’s a lot easier to determine where the finish line is if we know where the journey started, so if you have the initial records, bring them to your appointment. If you don’t, we’ll contact your original orthodontist and get them for you.
In short, it’s treatment is always faster and less expensive if you can complete the entire journey with the same orthodontist. If that’s not practical or possible, there are lots of options to achieve the smile you’ve always dreamed of. Give us a call for a free consultation!
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