Technology

At MYORTHODONTIST we follow Alexander Pope’s sage advice from 1709, “Be not the first by which a new thing is tried, nor the last to lay the old aside”.

We are dedicated to constantly remain at the forefront of efficiency in treatment without sacrificing quality and we attend conferences, orthodontic trade shows and read the orthodontic scientific literature to be alert to product updates and treatment ideas. This keeps us excited about our work as we constantly evaluate innovations.

We were in the first accreditation class for Invisalign back in 2001, we are pretty much paperless, with networked computers throughout the practice including a “sign in” facility as you enter to alert us to your arrival. A bell on the door might be a quaint alternative but doesn’t tell us who you are and when you arrived. We are digital – meaning that many treatments are evaluated and planned on the computer screen and records are quickly available at chair side on the individual screen.

Our attaching braces appointments are usually less than 20 minutes to fit the appliances because we do it indirectly (see fixed appliances page). That means that the positioning of each bracket has been done before you arrive and then all the brackets are simultaneously and rapidly affixed to your teeth using a transfer tray. We leave another 30 minutes to tell you how to look after your appliances and clean your teeth.

In the days of braces wrapped around each tooth individually, it took three one hour appointments, a week apart, to fit braces (and it cost about the same as a small car). So now you just need an easy appointment, <20 minute, pain free, braces fitting, while you watch Mr Bean on the ceiling screen. It’s a different, hassle free experience, for patients with anxiety. Placing Invisalign attachments is likely to be a similar, even shorter appointment.

There are clever, intraoral scanners now available. The “wand” on the machine takes hundreds of dimensionally accurate pictures of your teeth as it is moved around the mouth and the computer stitches the pictures together just like your camera can stitch together a panoramic set of landscape photos. It takes about 5┬áminutes to do the whole mouth.

Our diagnosis and treatment planning has been greatly assisted by going digital. Upon arrival of a new patient we take digital photos of the smile, the profile, the teeth from the front, sides, open, closed, from above and from below. It takes minutes. This would be the same at most orthodontists. These photos can be up on the computer screen three minutes later. That means we can correlate the findings of the clinical examination and together view the close ups of the teeth and face/smile and assess facial balance etc as we sit around a table and have a frank discussion. It’s very streamlined and you can soon be on your way with a good understanding of the problem and treatment alternatives. We always follow that up with further evaluation and confirmation after seeing X-rays, and then we write a report to you and your dentist. We have already told your our fees at the first appointment and they are never open ended and include everything (except delinquent behaviour) even retention. You can pay fees with interest free instalments if you so choose.

Over the years technological innovation has transformed orthodontic practice and we find that introducing new ways and materials keeps us thoroughly enjoying our work. We hope you pick up on that vibe when you come to see us.

Dr Morris Rapaport

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