We treat patients of all ages but we’ve seen enough young patients to know how to advise parents on when to bring their children into our office. The American Association of Orthodontists recommends that the initial orthodontic evaluation should occur at the first sign of orthodontic problems or no later than age 7. The Orthodontic specialist will examine your child to determine if early treatment is indicated. An Orthodontist can identify any crossbites, crowding, and other problems that may worsen if left untreated as your child continues to grow and develop. At this early age, orthodontic treatment may or not be necessary, but vigilant examination can anticipate the most advantageous time to begin treatment.
When treatment starts early, the orthodontist can guide the growth of the jaw and guide incoming permanent teeth. Early treatment can also regulate the width of the upper and lower dental arches, gain space for permanent teeth, avoid the need for permanent tooth extractions, reduce likelihood of impacted permanent teeth, correct thumb-sucking, and eliminate abnormal swallowing or speech problems. In other words, when indicated early treatment can prevent alignment problems of the teeth and jaws from worsening and reduce the time of later treatment or eliminate later treatment all together.
You don’t have to wait for your general dentist to reffer you to an Orthodontist.
Have your child examined by an Orthodontic specialist to determine if early treatment is necessary.