Not every patient is the same and we don’t just slap braces on and hope for the best. Every patient is evaluated as an individual so that Dr. Renick can design the best plan for treatment.
Orthodontic treatment may not be the only treatment a patient will require to achieve a healthy functional smile. For this reason, a diagnosis and treatment plan may require a coordinated effort between different doctors. This is much the same as the medical field where a family doctor may feel the need to have a patient consult with a cardiologist, endocrinologist, etc. Dr. Renick will confer with other professionals such as a general dentist, an oral surgeon, an endodontist (root canal specialist), etc. if she feels that the patient’s oral health warrants it.
There are three main reasons Dr. Renick may refer a patient. The first reason is for diagnostic purposes, such as an oral biopsy. All of these issues would factor in to the overall treatment plan. If a patient is complaining about pain, this should be addressed prior to orthodontics. Dr. Renick may refer a patient to their general dentist to evaluate for decay, to a periodontist (gum specialist) to assess for gum disease,
or to an endodontist to check for infections of the tooth. Any unusual lumps, swellings or radiographic anomalies need to be investigated before orthodontic treatment begins.
The second reason Dr. Renick may refer a patient would be to have a specific problem addressed or a specific procedure done. You can’t build a house on a weak foundation. Likewise, orthodontic treatment should be delayed until any suspected decay or gum disease is addressed. For this reason, Dr. Renick may refer the patient back to their general dentist or to another specialist. Treatment may be coordinated and a timeline established between Dr. Renick and the specialist. An example would include delaying a permanent crown, treating with a temporary crown until orthodontic treatment is completed, and then finalizing the crown. Dr. Renick may refer a patient to an oral surgeon to assess the wisdom teeth or evaluate the patient for jaw surgery prior to providing orthodontic treatment.
The third reason Dr. Renick may refer a patient would be to coordinate a complex treatment plan to achieve a stable and healthy solution to a patient’s problem. This often is seen with adult cases where the patient has multiple dental problems to address such as missing teeth. Many times, a dentist will want to place a bridge or an implant in those cases and finds he doesn’t have the room to do it. At that point, the treatment is coordinated with an orthodontist to be able to make replacing missing teeth possible for the patient. The orthodontist can create a better environment to allow the general dentist to restore damaged or missing teeth.
If you have any questions about referrals to specialists or to make an appointment at our orthodontic office in Sunbury, Ohio, please contact Renick Orthodontics at 740-936-5003.