The American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) recommends that children visit an orthodontist as soon as their dentist notices that there might be a problem or before they are seven years old. We may not have to do anything at this age, other than monitor the child’s mouth. However, if we continue to watch your child, we can start treatment right away!
Early intervention is beneficial because we are able to watch how your child’s mouth and teeth grow and develop, so if we see something that needs to be done, we will do it. We will also know exactly when to start treatment, if needed.
You may wonder why the AAO emphasizes age seven. At that age, the first adult molars are coming in and helping establish the back bite. We can then evaluate your child’s bite, both front-to-back and side-to-side. There are many reasons to start treatment early.
Early treatment allows us to do the following:
- Make room for the permanent teeth when there is overcrowding
- Ensure facial symmetry
- Reduce trauma when the front teeth are protruding
Also, early treatment reduces the need to remove teeth and reduces the time patients must wear braces. Orthodontic treatment is crucial because without it you may have to deal the following problems according to AAO studies:
- Crossbites can result in unfavorable growth and uneven tooth wear.
- Open bites can result in tongue-thrusting habits and speech impediments. While with orthodontic treatment, you may have the following benefits:
- A healthier mouth since crowded teeth can be hard to brush causing cavities and gum disease.
- Fewer broken teeth since protruding teeth are more likely to get broken.
We truly believe that orthodontic care is about more than just a pretty smile. We believe that it makes you healthier. If you have any questions about orthodontic care, don’t hesitate to contact us today.