All Kids Should Get an Orthodontic Check-Up By Age 7

To have a smile that’s long-lasting and healthy, your child needs teeth and jaws that are properly aligned – in other words, a healthy bite. The American Association of Orthodontists recommends that your child get an orthodontic check-up no later than age 7.

By then, your child’s teeth have developed enough for Dr. Just to spot small problems with jaw growth and emerging teeth while some baby teeth are still present. This check-up may reveal that your child’s bite is fine, and braces for kids aren’t necessary.

Or, Dr. Just may identify a developing problem but recommend monitoring your child’s growth and development and begin treatment at the appropriate time for your child. In other cases, Dr. Just might find a problem that can benefit from early treatment.

What’s Early Treatment?

Early treatment may prevent or intercept more serious problems from developing and may make treatment at a later age shorter and less complicated. In some cases, Dr. Just will achieve results that may not be possible once the face and jaws have finished growing.

Signs the Bite’s Not Right

It’s not always easy to tell when your child may need braces or has an orthodontic problem. Even teeth that look straight may be hiding a problem bite.

Here are some clues that may indicate the need for orthodontic attention:

  • Early or late loss of baby teeth
  • Difficulty in chewing or biting
  • Breathing through the mouth
  • Thumb-sucking
  • Crowded, misplaced, or blocked-out teeth
  • Jaws that are too far forward or back
  • Biting the cheek or biting into the roof of the mouth
  • Protruding teeth
  • Upper and lower teeth that don’t meet or meet in an abnormal way
  • An unbalanced facial appearance
  • Grinding or clenching of the teeth

Choosing the Best Time for Treatment

While the age that kids get braces may vary, orthodontic treatment most often begins between 9 and 14. This is because some orthodontic problems are easier to correct if they are treated early.

If Dr. Just thinks your child will need treatment, he will let you know when it will be best to enjoy the treatment. This gives your orthodontist the best chance to:

  • Guide jaw growth
  • Lower the risk of trauma to protruded front teeth
  • Correct harmful oral habits
  • Improve appearance and self-esteem in your child
  • Guide permanent teeth into a more favorable position
  • Create a more pleasing arrangement of teeth, lips, and face

Problems to Watch for in Growing Children

Malocclusions (“bad bites”) may benefit from early diagnosis and referral to an orthodontic specialist for a full evaluation. If your child has one or more of these dental issues, please contact us by setting up a free consultation. We’d love to discuss your child’s orthodontic options and develop a treatment plan customized to your child’s needs.

7 & Up Club

The American Association of Orthodontics recommends that children have their first orthodontic evaluation by the age of 7. Early assessment and pre-orthodontic guidance enable the orthodontist to monitor a child’s development with periodic six-month recall examinations at no charge. Recall visits become very important as Dr. Just can keep parents informed of their child’s growth and development, as well as recommend any interceptive treatment to correct abnormalities at an early age which will minimize extensive and lengthy treatment later. Young patients who are not yet ready to begin orthodontic treatment become members of our “7 & Up Observation Club”. Observation patients each receive a membership card and are instructed to bring this card with them o each appointment. For every visit they show us their membership card, 7 & Up Club members have the opportunity to win great rewards such as gift certificates. Membership expires once our observation patients get their braces.

Young patients who are not yet ready to begin orthodontic treatment become members of our “7 & Up Observation Club”. Observation patients each receive a membership card and are instructed to bring this card with them o each appointment. For every visit they show us their membership card, 7 & Up Club members have the opportunity to win great rewards such as gift certificates. Membership expires once our observation patients get their braces.

Super smiles start young! if you have a child as young as 7 who has not yet had an orthodontic evaluation, call now to schedule their complimentary consultation.