“Why would my child need to see an Orthodontist already? His baby teeth just now fell out!”
Braces are not just to be started in the teens! Starting orthodontic treatment as early as 9 can help limit complexity and longevity of treatment as they grow older.
The best age to bring your child in for their first orthodontic consultation is between the ages of 7 or 9, while their baby teeth are almost all out and their permanent teeth are coming in. Starting treatment early can also correct any habits such as tongue thrusting and thumb sucking. The two phases of Orthodontic treatment can be effected due to your child’s age and growth stage. Here, we’ll go over the two phases and how starting early can truly help your child in the long-run!
Phase 1: Lights… Camera…
Phase 1, also known as ‘Early Interceptive Treatment’, involves all of the prep work before the brackets get to be bonded. First, your child has their consultation with Gulfside Dental’s Orthodontist, where they will examine their bite, jet, and alignment, and take x-rays. Next they plan for treatment. This includes planning for appliances such as expanders and space maintainers, as well as extractions of remaining baby teeth. Depending on age and growth, the longevity of Phase 1 varies. When they are still growing, their jaw and palate are more malleable and easier to manipulate to perfection. Orthodontic appliances, such as a palate expander, do not bring quite as much discomfort while they are younger because of their still-growing body, resulting in a shorter treatment. Waiting until they are older can cause longer treatment because it would take longer for their palate to expand. At the age range of 7-9 , it’s easier to address any orthodontic treatment they will need in the next few years. Bringing them in for their first consultation so early gives you an idea of what is to come.
Phase 2: …Action!
Phase 2 is when the real action happens. This is the stage of treatment when the brackets are bonded and devices are applied to correct teeth and jaw alignment. It is after this phase begins that you and your child will see more and more results as far as straightened teeth go. Phase 2 typically lasts between 12-28 months, depending on the severity of the case.
Much like most things in life, Orthodontic treatment is all about preparation and prevention. By bringing your child to Gulfside Dental & Orthodontics at an early age, you are setting them up for a better smile in the future.
We at Gulfside Dental are always running fantastic specials for Orthodontic Treatment! If you, your child, or someone you know is interested in perfecting their smile, contact one of our local offices right away to schedule your FREE consultation! Ask us about our current monthly special!