Is it an Orthodontist's Office, or a Hotel?

I had a pretty busy day yesterday, so you would think that I had plenty to write about. However, as the day went on, I found myself scraping around in my mind's idea bank, looking for a good subject for a post. This led me to the question of "What did I used to write about before I started these large home improvement projects?", and the answer to that is that I just don't remember. That seems like a long, long time ago.

However, this quandary was solved as soon as I took Jericho after school to his orthodontist visit. At this point, Jericho's grandparents will be asking, "Jericho goes to an orthodontist?". But this was just a consultation visit, as we were referred by our local dentist. Trust me, if we had been to this particular office before, you would have heard about it.

This place truly was amazing. Our first clue that this wasn't your ordinary, run-of-the-mill office was the white board outside in hallway. It offered congratulations to those patients getting their braces off that day: Braces off today: Suzie T. and Bobby L.! It offered solemn encouragement to those getting braces on that day: Braces on today: Sally S. and Tiffany P. Of course, there was a welcome to the new, potential patients, as well, and there was "Jericho L.", being greeted along with a few others.

Then there was the rest of the office. The closest thing I can compare it to would be a hotel. The waiting area has a fancy coffee bar, a computer available for web surfing, as well as wi-fi if you bring your laptop along (with a handy laptop "bar/platform", as well). Of course, there is the usual flat screen TV showing the news, but if that gets too boring for the patients, they can slip into the twenty-seat, large-screen movie theatre. Or they could play one of the two Play Stations available, or peruse the bulletin board area. Here they can participate in different activities, such as "Guess How Many Pumpkin Seeds are in This Jar To Win a Target Gift Card", or enter a drawing for a $50 VISA cash card (but only if you're a good patient and don't get gum or candy stuck in your braces for several visits in a row).

Of course, each patient chair is equipped with personal TVs, as well as a designated seat for the parents, too. (Although I have to say that considering how dentist offices in general give me the heeby jeebies these days, I would probably opt to wait with the coffee bar and the web surfing.)

There is a "goody" area that holds a gift bag and balloons for each patient getting their braces off. They offer you bottled water several times during your visit. They even give you fresh cookies when you leave.

Um, wow. Is this the way orthodontist's offices are these days? I definitely don't remember this kind of service in my days in ole' Dr. Rader's office all those many years ago.

Of course, it all makes sense when they give you a quote for braces and it's one set fee - not by the visit or the service, but one set amount. Granted, if you need an emergency weekend visit because a wire is poking into your cheek, it's in there. Of course, if they upgrade their PlayStation machine, it's probably in there, too.

I'm not sure what we'll do about the whole braces issue - we'll probably get a second opinion, as well as a second cost quote. However, if we do go down this path and the costs are comparable, I'm guessing Jericho would want to go with this hotel orthodontist.

What child (or coffee-drinking websurfing parent) wouldn't?

picture by Thomas Hawk (Creative Commons License: Attribution, Non-Commercial)
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Barbara  – (28 October 2009 at 11:35)  

Definitely doesn't match any of my memories of Dr. Radar's office. Dr. Burkhart, who took over Dr. (whatever his name was)'s office has a fancy new office, although nothing like that. Good luck with the decision.

PS We love the remodeling blogs, too. Still wondering what colors Jacob picked. Love ya!

Barbara  – (28 October 2009 at 11:36)  

Dr. Reese was his name. Knew it would come to me if I wanted long enough or went on and thought about something else for a while.

Sarah  – (5 November 2009 at 18:58)  

Can't imagine that quote. Ashley's braces are outrageous, and we just get free wax.

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