While not every child needs orthodontic treatment, it is advised to take them in for an orthodontic check-up by the time they are 7 years old. By taking your child to an orthodontist at an early age, it can help to spot problems early on, when they are more easily fixed.
With most children, permanent teeth start to come in around the age of 6 or 7. Most of their permanent teeth should be in place by the time they are around 13. The American Association of Orthodontists recommends that you take your child for an orthodontic treatment by 7 years of age.
This is recommended because this is when their permanent teeth have started to come in. There will be enough permanent teeth for your orthodontist to evaluate if there seems to be a developing problem.
Early treatment, also called interceptive treatment, typically begins while your child still has at least some of their baby teeth. Early treatment is preferred because you can oftentimes correct problems that would be very difficult to treat once your child is older. There are certain conditions that are much easier to treat if they are caught early on.
Your orthodontist may also be able to guide the permanent teeth coming in to their correct places, reducing how long your child has to wear braces for at a later age, or possibly eliminating the need for braces altogether. They will also be able to tell if there will be room for all of your child’s permanent teeth, determining if they will need treatment sooner rather than later.
Bad habits can also be picked up on and corrected. Such bad habits that can affect the development and alignment of permanent teeth and the jaw are thumb sucking and mouth breathing. The earlier you correct bad habits, the less likely they are to do any lasting damage.
If it is evident that later orthodontic treatment will be needed, but early treatment isn’t necessary, your child’s growth and development will simply be monitored until that time.
Sometimes it is glaringly obvious that your child needs early orthodontic treatment, and sometimes there are hidden problems when your child has perfectly straight teeth. That’s why it’s important to take your child to their check up by age 7. However, there are some signs to look out for that can alert you to the need for treatment, including:
Parris Orthodontics offers early orthodontic check-ups in Germantown, Tennessee, and surrounding areas. At this appointment, we will examine your child’s developing teeth and jaw for problems. If any early issues are found, Dr. Parris will discuss all of your options with you so that any problems found can be corrected before they get worse or cause further damage.
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