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Frequently Asked Questions

Orthodontic problems can be caused by a number of factors such as genetics and developmental factors. They can also be acquired as a result of habits (thumb sucking, tongue thrusting and mouth breathing) and the early or late loss of baby teeth.

Orthodontic problems that are left untreated can worsen or cause other dental problems over time.

Your smile is too important to leave to chance. You deserve to be treated by the most highly qualified doctor to achieve a healthy, beautiful smile that lasts. It takes a doctor ten years from the start of their training to be qualified as a Specialist Orthodontist. This involves five years of general dental training in an accredited university, a two year general practice residency followed by three years of dedicated specialist orthodontic training in an accredited university training centre.

A board certified specialist orthodontist has undergone all of the above plus had their treatment results assessed by an independent and anonymous specialist panel to certify the standard of care. A board certified specialist orthodontist is the most highly qualified doctor to look after you.

Dr Shimanto is the only Specialist Orthodontist who is board certified and accredited in Norwest. To achieve board certification an orthodontist must not only already be a registered specialist orthodontist but also needs to have their treated cases assessed by the board. The cases must be prospectively nominated before starting treatment and the end results are then independently peer assessed and reviewed. Achieving board certification is a result of Dr Shimanto’s commitment to clinical excellence, ongoing education and to assure our patients will be treated to the highest clinical standards. Dr. Shimanto is the only board certified specialist orthodontist in the Norwest area.

Orthodontic problems can contribute to tooth decay, gum disease, and tooth loss. An incorrect bite may cause abnormal wear of tooth surfaces, difficulty in chewing and/or speaking, excess stress on supporting bone and gum tissue, and possible jaw joint problems. Orthodontic problems, if left untreated, may have an adverse social or psychological problem impact.

Untreated orthodontic problems can become worse over time, requiring more extensive treatment in the future. Orthodontic treatment to correct a problem early may prove less costly than the additional dental care required to treat the more serious problems that can develop in later years.

No, it is not necessary to have a referral from a dentist to be seen by Dr. Shimanto. Simply call our office to book for an initial consultation on 9672 6113 for our Orthodontist to assess you or your child’s teeth.

The Australian Society of Orthodontists recommend an orthodontic assessment at 7 years of age. This is because an early assessment can avoid complicated, invasive and lengthy treatment later in life. Different treatment modalities can be used to intervene while your child is still growing and therefore prevent need for extensive treatment in the future.

To book your first visit with us you do not need a referral but if your dentist has provided one then please bring it along. Your first appointment allows us to meet you and discuss the nature of your concerns. This appointment is designed to inform you, in detail, about the nature and extent of the orthodontic treatment required. By focussing on your concerns and wishes we will:

  • Explain the treatment you may require and the types of appliances that can be used
  • Explain the length of treatment and what you can expect at each appointment
  • Answer all your questions relating to your orthodontic treatment and discuss the financial arrangement.

If orthodontic treatment is required, diagnostic records will be necessary. These may include the following:

  • Digital photographs of the teeth and face
  • Digital X-rays to determine the position of teeth, jaws and soft tissues
  • Study casts of the teeth to determine tooth size and analyse the relationship between the teeth


At Norwest Orthodontics, we listen to you and provide a personalised approach. We will fully inform you about your treatment options prior to proceeding. All our patient’s treatments are customised to ensure their desires and needs are met whilst providing a warm, comfortable friendly environment.

In many instances Dr Shimanto determines that early treatment is not needed. If so your child is offered complimentary reviews to ensure that the teeth and jaws are developing correctly.

Your child will benefit from becoming familiar with the orthodontic staff and the office environment. This ensures a pleasant experience during any future orthodontic treatment if this is needed. Familiarising your child with orthodontics and dental care will also help them to make positive associations with oral health which will help to carry on maintaining good dental health regimes later in life.

New techniques and materials today have made orthodontic treatment more comfortable than ever. Discomfort, if any, is temporary and can easily be managed using over the counter analgesics.

Although every case is different, on average treatment can take up to from one to two years. Orthodontic treatment times vary with factors that include the severity of the problem being corrected and how well the patient follows the orthodontist’s instructions.

First and foremost, orthodontic treatment involves the patient. To achieve the desired results, the patient must diligently follow the orthodontist’s instructions. This team work approach is essential for success.

Dr Shimanto uses custom-made braces, retainers, or other corrective appliances according to the problem being treated. Whether they’re removable or “fixed” into the mouth; made of metal, ceramic or plastic; all orthodontic appliances have a common purpose – to use gentle pressure to move teeth and jaws into their proper positions. Today’s patients benefit from techniques and materials that greatly enhance the comfort of orthodontic treatment.

The cost of orthodontic treatment depends on many factors, including the severity of the problem, its complexity and length of treatment. Your treatment coordinator will be glad to discuss fees with you before treatment begins and organise a payment option that best suits you. Many patients find that orthodontic treatment is more affordable today than ever.

Orthodontic treatment may eliminate the need for other medical and dental treatment later on. The physical and psychological benefits last a lifetime, making orthodontics one of the best investments in healthcare and quality of life. At Norwest Orthodontics we offer a variety of payment plans with plans from as little as $10 a day.

For your convenience, we accept payment by EFT, cash, cheque, Visa, Mastercard, and EFTPOS.

We aim to provide you with optimal treatment for the best possible results, keeping your wishes and preferences in mind. We do this by placing you at the centre of the treatment process and with this in mind, we do not have a direct relationship nor are we allied with any health fund. However, we will be as helpful as possible by providing all necessary documents and receipts that your health fund may require for you to make a claim. 

We will make every effort to ensure that your appointments are scheduled at convenient times.  We are open for consultation by appointment on Saturdays. A SMS reminder system makes it easy for you to keep track of your next appointment.

It is very important to see your dentist for routine check-ups to prevent dental decay and to monitor the health of the gums. Regular visits to your dentist will help maintain a healthy mouth.

By the age of 7, most children have a mix of baby and adult teeth. Dr Shimanto can detect developing problems with jaw growth and emerging teeth while at this age. 

For these reasons, it is recommended that your child get an orthodontic check-up at age 7. While your child’s teeth may appear to be straight, there could be a problem that only an orthodontist can detect. Of course, the check-up may reveal that your child’s bite is fine, and that can be comforting news.

Even if an orthodontic problem is detected, Dr Shimanto may not recommend immediate treatment but rather a “wait-and-see” approach, checking on your child from time to time as the permanent teeth come in and the jaws and face continue to grow. For each patient who needs treatment, there’s an ideal time for treatment to begin in order to achieve the best results. Dr Shimanto is the specialist who has the knowledge to determine when the time is just right.

In some cases, Dr Shimanto might find a problem that can benefit from early treatment. Early treatment may prevent more serious problems from developing, and may make treatment at a later age shorter and less complicated. Typically, early treatment involves the use of orthodontic appliances  to guide the growth of young bones, create room and a better environment for adult teeth as they emerge

When Dr Shimanto assesses your child early he can:

  • Reduce or eliminate the need for extraction
  • Avoid the need for future jaw surgery
  • Correct harmful oral habits
  • Aid speech development
  • Encourage the jaw to grow correctly
  • Simplify and shorten treatment time in full braces
  • Guide permanent teeth into alignment
  • Preserve or gain space for erupting permanent teeth
  • Reduce potential damage to jaw joints
  • Identify upper airway obstruction and problems related to mouth-breathing
  • Create room for crowded, erupting teeth
  • Creating facial symmetry through influencing jaw growth
  • Reducing the risk of trauma to protruding front teeth

If you play contact sports eg. rugby, soccer, hockey you should wear a mouthguard to protect your teeth. At Norwest Orthodontics we can provide our patients with special mouthguards designed for people wearing appliances. Please inform our staff if you play any contact sports.

We use state-of-the art sterilisation procedures to follow universal precautions and fulfil or exceed all Australian Law requirements. 

For a doctor to be registered as a specialist orthodontist by AHPRA, they must have first completed general dental training and practiced as a general dentist before embarking on specialist orthodontic training at a recognised university specialist program. Specialist orthodontists are the most qualified doctors to look after your orthodontic needs. Make sure the doctor treating you is a specialist by checking with AHPRA here.

Norwest Orthodontics is an established practice renowned for its excellence in service and holistic treatment approach.

Here are a number of reasons to choose us:

  • Exclusive provider of Damon Q/Clear in the Hills District
  • Dr Shimanto is the only board certified specialist orthodontist in the Norwest Area.
  • Certified Invisalign provider
  • We provide premium customised service at an affordable price
  • Flexible interest free payment plans
  • Specialised in early intervention and non-extraction philosophy
  • We have a team of experienced and highly trained staff
  • Open extended hours and Saturday consultations available by appointment
  • Convenient location and free parking
  • State of the art practice

Norwest Orthodontics is open:

  • 8am – 6pm Monday through Thursday (after hours appointments available)
  • 9am – 1pm Friday
  • 8am – 2pm Saturdays (consultations by prior appointment)

Contact our practice on (02) 9672 6113 to organise an appointment at a convenient time for you.

Orthodontics is a specialist field of dentistry that is officially known as Orthodontics and Dentofacial Orthopaedics. The purpose of orthodontics is to treat “malocclusions” which is another way of saying a “bad or incorrect bite.” Malocclusions are commonly known as orthodontic problems.

When you have a malocclusion, your teeth, lips and/or jaws don’t line up correctly. Your teeth may be crooked, your bite might not work correctly, or your jaws may look unbalanced.

To fix these orthodontic problems, braces and other corrective appliances are often used. This correction of the teeth and their supportive structures makes for a healthy, attractive smile.

An Oral Health Therapist (OHT) is dual qualified in dental hygiene and dental therapy. They achieve their qualifications by successfully completing a Bachelor of Oral Health degree at university. After successfully completing this, they are then registered with AHPRA (Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency). Our OHTs work in conjunction with Dr Shimanto in treating our patients to ensure they achieve the excellent results Norwest Orthodontics is renowned for in a caring and gentle environment.

If you have additional questions, please contact us, or call
(02) 9672 6113

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