What to Look For In an Orthodontist?

Are you hiding your teeth often, worried about your smile or feeling conscious when you look at your mouth in the mirror?
Visiting an orthodontist could be your answer to the perfect smile. Today, the team here at River Practice are discussing what you need to look for in an orthodontist.

What is an orthodontist?

If you are in need of straightening your teeth, a Specialist orthodontist is the person to turn to. With extensive training, your orthodontist can straighten teeth and misaligned jaws – boosting your confidence and happiness!

Is it time to visit the orthodontist?

If you are worried about your teeth being crooked, and your confidence is deflated by their appearance, book a consultation with a Specialist orthodontist. They can provide you with advice and guidance about the best treatment for you.
After your treatment, your oral hygiene can improve, your teeth will be straight and so much easier to keep clean. Not only will your teeth be looking wonderful, you will also reduce the risk of gum disease.
If you are concerned about your child’s teeth, it is best to speak to your general dentist about referring them to see a Specialist orthodontist.

Qualifications and experience

It’s important that your orthodontist has the relevant qualifications and experience to perform treatment on you. Therefore, find out what qualifications your orthodontist has before proceeding with treatment.
Your orthodontist should have a Bachelor of Dentistry followed by a Masters in Orthodontics. Also, look upon whether your orthodontist is registered as a specialist by the General Dental Council – they will have a GDC number, usually found on their website. Your orthodontist should also be a member of professional bodies such as British Orthodontic Society.
Specialist orthodontists at River Practice have done MORth, which is an extended course providing a specialist registration with our governing body the General Dental Council. They can also use ‘Specialist’ in their title.
Gaining a Membership in Orthodontics (MORth) demonstrates the understanding and competency which is required for practicing as a Specialist in Orthodontics.
You can relax at River Practice, with the knowledge that your orthodontists have extended understanding and expertise in this area.
You can find River Practice’s orthodontist GDC numbers here.


Seek an orthodontist who is person-centred, understands your situation and required needs. Your orthodontic journey needs to be well planned by your orthodontist, alongside designing a treatment strategy which meets your specific requirements. As long as you fully understand the treatment – you have found an orthodontist you can rely on.
Find out what the relationship is like with your dentist and orthodontist. Communication is key, especially with understanding your treatment as your dentist should be kept informed. Working together will ensure that your treatment will be completed with your needs being a priority.
Before your treatment, your orthodontist will run through your medical history, understand your needs, alongside talking about treatment options. They will then take photographs, x-rays and give you a treatment plan, cost and estimated duration. This organised process ensures that your experience is managed effectively and your needs are also met.

Read reviews

It is important to get to know your chosen practice before choosing treatment with a particular orthodontist.
Ask friends and family about their experience of orthodontics and also look on websites for reviews, and take a look at ‘before and after’ photos.

Is it a relaxed environment?

Is the environment within the practice friendly, professional, welcoming and clean? These are all signs your experience will be managed with care. If the practice is run well alongside the staff qualified and friendly, this is a good indicator that you’re going to have a smooth treatment.
Treatments can last up to two years, therefore you want to find a practice which provides a relaxing environment during your visits.
Check out River Practice’s tour here – to gain a feel of what you can expect.

Cost and finance

Having orthodontic treatment can be a financial investment therefore be aware of the costs and payment plans beforehand.
At River Practice, full consultations are free of charge and afterwards you will be provided with a full written quote. This is a fixed price and will only be amended after consultation with you. Our payment plans are also a fixed length, so there will be no hidden charges.

Orthodontic Treatments

There are a number of options to choose from, learn about the treatments available to gain an understanding of the treatment you could go through. This will give you the chance to ask questions to your orthodontist, creating a more relaxed experience for you when you have your consultation.
River Practice offer a whole range of treatments and options to straighten your smile.
During the initial consultation, your orthodontist will discuss the suitable treatments available. These treatments include:

Fixed Braces

Fixed braces involve small metal or ceramic brackets which are bonded to each tooth, linked by thin wire and held together by elastic rings. This wire is adjusted over time, resulting in straighter teeth and correct positioning of the jaw.

Removable Braces

Removable braces are used when minor correction is needed. They are non-fixed and can be easily removed by a plastic plate with wires – allowing teeth to move gradually by applying gentle pressure.


Invisible removable braces are a series of clear, removable aligners which work in a similar way to traditional metal braces but with a number of benefits and advantages. Invisible removable braces are a relatively new concept for treatment of minor orthodontic problems.


Incognito braces are often considered to be ‘invisible’ because they are fixed to the back of teeth so they can’t be seen when you smile. They offer similar advantages to traditional fixed braces.
Using state-of-the-art technology, these 100% customised braces offer precise bracket placement to achieve the perfect fit. Our Specialist Orthodontist, Dr Jeremy Peak, was amongst the first in the country able to offer ‘Incognito’ lingual orthodontic braces.
Our specialist orthodontists will always consult with you before any treatment. Discussion about the best treatments will be discussed and advised, providing a relaxed and worry-free experience for you.
We hope this article has provided you with useful insight in searching for the right orthodontist. It is important to take all factors into consideration including; personal needs, orthodontic qualifications, funding and treatment options.
For your free consultation, contact River Practice for a friendly chat about your journey for a sparkling smile.