First Recommended Orthodontic Consultation: Age 7

Orthodontic problems rarely fix themselves. Did you know that the American Association of Orthodontists recommends the first orthodontic consultation at age 7? By age 6-7 the first permanent teeth begin to erupt and some orthodontic issues become evident as well. It is frequently helpful to address a developing orthodontic problem at an earlier age before it becomes a bigger problem.

Early treatment may help address the following:

  • Underbites (lower front teeth are ahead of the upper front teeth)
  • Crossbites (upper teeth are inside of the lower teeth)
  • Functional shift (the jaw shifts to one side as the teeth contact together)
  • Very crowded teeth
  • Excessive spacing between teeth
  • Extra or missing teeth
  • Teeth that meet abnormally or do not meet at all
  • Prolonged oral habits (i.e., thumb or finger sucking)

Please note that not every child needs early orthodontic treatment. There are 3 outcomes to the initial consultation evaluation:

  1. No treatment is expected to be necessary
  2. Treatment may be indicated in the future. In this scenario the child will be followed routinely for re-evaluation visits to monitor dental eruption and the growth of the face & jaws
  3. There is an orthodontic problem that would best addressed as part of Early orthodontic treatment

While there are many orthodontic problems that are best addressed in permanent adolescent dentition, Early or Phase I orthodontic treatment may be in the patient's best interest if the existing orthodontic problem is likely to become more serious if left untreated.

Most children who require Phase I treatment will still need orthodontic (phase II) treatment when they are older. However, this later orthodontic treatment is usually shorter, simpler, less invasive and more predictable.

The more you know the more you grow! Please give us a call to schedule your FREE orthodontic consultation directly from our website 24/7 today to learn more.

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