Orthodontic Treatment for Children
The American Association of Orthodontists recommends that your child see an orthodontist by the age of 7. At this age, an orthodontist can spot subtle issues with jaw growth and emerging teeth while some baby teeth are still present. Some orthodontic problems may be easier to correct if they are found early. You don’t need a referral from a dentist to see an orthodontist.
Early evaluation means early detection of problems, and greater opportunity for more effective early treatment. An evaluation allows an orthodontist to monitor growth and development, reducing serious problems later. When early orthodontic intervention is not necessary, an orthodontist can carefully observe and track growth and development and begin treatment when it is ideal for the patient.
Signs of Orthodontic Problems
At Fredericksburg Orthodontics & Invisalign Center we look for signs which indicate possible bite problems and early orthodontic treatment may be needed. Orthodontic problems are not always straightforward. Here are some signs that might indicate the need for early treatment.
- Excess spaces between teeth
- Overbite, underbite, crossbite
- Extra teeth
- Missing teeth
- Severely protruding or buck teeth
- Severely crowded teeth
- Narrow upper or lower jaw
We have many options to intervene before problems, such as excessive crowding, worsen. We have orthodontic appliances such as palatal expanders that can create more room for newly erupting teeth.
Benefits of Early Treatment
There are many benefits to early orthodontic treatment. Some of the most direct results of early treatment include:
- Creating space for crowded, erupting permanent teeth
- Creating facial symmetry by influencing jaw growth
- Decreasing the risk of trauma to protruding front teeth
- Preserving space for unerupted teeth
- Reducing the need for tooth removal
- Reducing treatment time with braces
- Improve self-esteem & increase self-confidence
The goal of early treatment is to save our patients’ permanent teeth. We can make room, if necessary, so that we can prevent extractions of permanent teeth in the future.