Just for Grins Orthodontics strives to educate that it’s never too late to begin orthodontic treatment. When it comes to your youngster's teeth–earlier may be better than later! According to the American Association of Orthodontists, kids should have an initial orthodontic screening at age 7. What makes early evaluation, and potentially early treatment, so important?
There are several ways that kids can benefit from seeing an orthodontist at an early age, but it's important to recognize that early evaluation isn't necessarily followed by early treatment. In most cases, if orthodontic work is needed, we simply monitor your child's growth patterns until we see that it's time for treatment to begin. This gives us an opportunity to get the best results in the most efficient way, and to help prevent future problems.
Although every child's development is different, in most kids the first adult molars have typically started to emerge by around age six. This, along with other developmental markers, lets us get a handle on the basic alignment of the teeth, from front to back and side to side. It may also be possible at this point to determine whether there is adequate room in the mouth for all the permanent teeth — and, if not, to act on it.
Early intervention may also be helpful in resolving several other problems. Protruding teeth, especially in front, can be prone to chipping and fractures; they may also lead to problems with a child's self-image. A severe underbite, caused by the lower jaw growing much larger than the upper jaw, can result in serious bite problems.