Your first visit


Before you come to see the orthodontist, Dr Deborah Sykes, you may have some questions you would like answered about your first visit.

Why have I been referred to the orthodontist?

Your dentist would like specialist advice about the position of your teeth. Dr Deborah Sykes will advise whether you would benefit from orthodontic treatment.  Or you may not like the look of your teeth because they are crowded and would like your teeth to be straightened.

What is orthodontic treatment?

Orthodontic treatment usually involves the wearing of braces (removable or fixed), sometimes the extraction of teeth, and very occasionally, jaw surgery.  Treatment time for braces may vary between 6 months and 24 months, depending on the problem being corrected.

Why might I need orthodontic treatment?

There are three main reasons for having orthodontic treatment:

  1. To improve the function i.e. to make it easier to eat
  2. To improve the health of the teeth and gums.
  3. To improve the appearance of the teeth


smailes before & after



What will happen at my first appointment?

The orthodontist, Dr Deborah Sykes, will have a look at your mouth and teeth using a small mouth mirror and a ruler.  Details about your orthodontic problem will be recorded onto computer in your individual record which is protected by Privacy laws.

What will happen next?

There are likely to be four possible outcomes, each of which will be explained to you by Dr Deborah Sykes.

  1. You are not yet ready for treatment, in which case, you may need to see the Dr Deborah Sykes again when you are older.
  2. Your dental health is not very good.  This may be due to poor tooth brushing or decayed teeth.  Your treatment may be delayed until things have improved.
  3. You do not need treatment because the position of your teeth is perfectly acceptable, or expected to be.
  4. You are ready for treatment and need to decide whether to go ahead.

When will treatment start?

This will depend on:

  1. Problems with tooth brushing or tooth decay may have to be dealt with first.
  2. Certain types of treatment are best started while you are growing.
  3. How many of your adult teeth have come through. Some treatments are best left until the adult teeth have replaced the first teeth
  4. Some types of treatment may need to be delayed until growth of the face has almost stopped.

Dr Deborah Sykes will explain the best timing of the treatment for you.

What happens if I am ready to start treatment?

Dr Deborah Sykes will explain:

  1. The options for treatment and which is the best for you.
  2. The pros and cons of treatment.
  3. The approximate length of time the treatment will take.
  4. The commitment needed on your part if treatment is to be successful.
  5. When you can expect the treatment to begin.
  6. If you would like to go ahead with treatment, the Dr Deborah Sykes will ask for written consent.

What happens next?

Photographs and moulds (impressions) of your teeth may be taken and a referral given to you to have some x-rays taken with a Radiographic Clinic.  All of these measurements and records will help Dr Deborah Sykes decide which is the best treatment for you.

X-ray of the teeth and jaws Orthodontics - Your First Visit

Who will carry out the treatment?

Dr Deborah Sykes carries out the treatment personally, although in some cases another member of staff may assist you (e.g. our Dental Hygienist).  On occasions your own dentist will be asked to treat you under the guidance of the orthodontist.  Your dentist will usually carry out any extractions that are necessary as part of the treatment.

It is very important that you understand your treatment for the best result.  Please ask any questions that may help you understand better.

We look forward to seeing you soon.