8 Questions Moms Should Ask When Looking for An Orthodontist

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This article is sponsored by Smith Orthodontics.

Being a parent means we are constantly juggling and learning. Sometimes this can be overwhelming, especially when entering the unknown territory of orthodontics! Our team at Smith Orthodontics wants to help you find the perfect fit for your family, so today Dr. Brian is answering eight of the most frequently asked questions we receive at our practice.

8 Questions Moms Should Ask When Looking for An Orthodontist

What factors are taken into consideration when deciding if my child needs treatment?

The most important aspect is that the patient and parents feel comfortable with the orthodontist and the office. Wichita is really fortunate to have a number of good orthodontists. Taking the time to visit a couple offices for an exam can really help kids. In orthodontics there are various ways to treat and align teeth. Parents know their kids the best, so by visiting  a couple of consultations, parents can hear how correction could be made, and decide if that method will be best for their kiddo.

When should my child be seen by an orthodontist?

I agree with the American Association of Orthodontists that the best time to visit an orthodontist is when kiddos are 7 years old. This is the perfect age because it coincides with the permanent first molars erupting into the mouth. This doesn’t mean that your child will need braces at this time, or even ever! For most of our patients, early orthodontic correction is not necessary. One of the services we offer at no charge to patients is complimentary six-month growth and development monitoring. We like to make this fun, and these patients are part of The.Smile.Squad. I see these kiddos twice a year to evaluate bite development and keep parents informed. Kids in The.Smile.Squad. get a t-shirt, earn wooden nickels (our fun rewards program) and can participate in our office contests.

Which orthodontic treatments are necessary and which are optional?

In our office it is important for me to be honest with patients and parents. Our goal is to evaluate the health of how a patient’s teeth fit together. When the bite is off, it can lead to wearing down of the teeth. If there is a functional bite issue, I want to make parents aware and offer options for correction. Some times patients come into our office with a healthy bite, but the aesthetics are not ideal. Aesthetics are always something we can help correct, but I want to leave that decision up to the parents and patient. In this case, aesthetic correction would be optional.

How long does treatment typically take?

Treatment length is really dependent upon the type of correction that is needed. Sometimes kiddos need early orthodontic intervention so room can be created for permanent teeth to come in. If this treatment is needed, it typically takes 12-16 months. For patients that have all of their permanent teeth in the mouth and need comprehensive correction, treatment can take 24-28 months.

How often will my child need to be seen?

Most orthodontic visits are scheduled every 7-10 weeks. In certain instances the time between appointments is 3-4 weeks, but we do everything we can to minimize the number of visits. Our goal is to be mindful of all families have going on, and provide treatment in an efficient manner. At certain points in treatment, we are also able to offer virtual appointments. Parents can securely upload photos to our website for review. This allows me to communicate with them and monitor treatment, and at the same time save a trip to our office.

Are there any affordable payment options?

We never want fees to be a barrier preventing parents from pursuing orthodontic treatment for their children. The health benefits of properly aligned teeth and the transformation we see in our patients after achieving a smile they love are too important to us. This is why we work hard provide flexible interest-free financing and payment options for treatment.

Does the office support the community?

Community involvement is important to our office. We love getting to support local schools and organizations and be involved in the life of our patients! Empowering our patients to also be involved matters to us as well. We have a wooden nickel reward program reward program for our patients where they can redeem the wooden nickels for gift cards for themselves or donate them and partner with us on one of our many office projects. These projects are our favorite! Our patients have joined us for a variety of projects ranging from food drives for local ministries, all the way to a water well in Ethiopia!

What is the culture of the office?

The culture and feel of an office is really important. As parents visit various orthodontists for consults, this is something to look for. We work hard to provide a comfortable and welcoming space for our patients and parents. For us, the relationship with our families is at the heart of all we do. Our team loves what we do, and we hope that is felt during appointments. We share ‘wins’ during our team evening huddle. It is compliments like these which drive our passions to care and serve.

What Smith Ortho Parents Are Saying

“Highly recommend! I interviewed 8 orthodontists for my 6 kids and went with the best orthodontic plan, pricing plan, and staff at Smith Orthodontics! From the professionalism of the highly-trained office staff to the personalized care from Dr. Brian to the flexible scheduling options, this was the best fit BY FAR for our family! The incentives, a modern & clean office, and Dr. Brian’s heart for missions & the community are just icing on the cake!”
– Tara. W

“The staff is top notch. They go out of their way to accommodate individual patient’s needs. We were very happy with how Dr. Brian always took the time to explain every step of the process. It was a positive experience every visit in Smith’s efficiently run office. You can tell they enjoy what they do. My daughter has a beautiful new smile that we are really happy with!”
– Betsy B.

“They are the most experienced, knowledgeable, friendly, and FUN office we have ever been in. So many fun experiences outside of the office also! They really care about their patients here!
-Tammy O.


Dr. Brian’s orthodontic dream began when he was just five years old. A few decades later, he is now thrilled to pick up the torch and carry on his dad’s 30-year legacy of orthodontic excellence in Wichita.

After receiving his dental degree from the University of Missouri-Kansas City in 2007, Dr. Brian was accepted into an advanced education program where he completed a year of specialized dental training. He then moved on to an internship with the world-renowned Lancaster Cleft Palate Clinic in Pennsylvania. In 2011, Dr. Brian received his orthodontic certificate and Master’s degree from Indiana University. The combination of these distinctive experiences has developed Dr. Brian into a well-rounded orthodontist who strives for “more than a smile” with each patient he sees. Passionate about helping those in need in our community and across the world, Dr. Brian has volunteered in several public health clinics and has also taken dental outreach trips to Central and South America.

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