Did you know that it is generally best to begin orthodontic treatment as early as possible? At Grand Dental – Sycamore, we strongly encourage parents to schedule a Phase 1 orthodontic consultation before their children become 7 years old. Our in-house orthodontic specialist and the many other dental experts in our office can identify developmental issues in teeth and jaws and begin treatment as early as recommended. It’s just another way we offer truly comprehensive dental care for your family. Is your child about the right age for this consultation? Please contact our office today!
By the time your child turns 7, some of their permanent teeth will already have started to come in, but some baby teeth are still there. Even at this stage, an orthodontist can recognize potential problems with bite alignment and jaw growth. Finding and addressing these issues at this young age are best because changes to the teeth and jaws are much easier while the mouth is still developing. That’s why the American Association of Orthodontists has identified age 7 to be the ideal age to schedule an orthodontic appointment. As a result, our orthodontic specialist has the opportunity to correct the development of your child’s mouth if needed.
Although most orthodontic issues can only be identified by an orthodontic specialist, your child’s general dentist or pediatric dentist may also see the need for orthodontic intervention during a regular checkup. In addition, you as a parent may notice certain symptoms that indicate orthodontic care is needed. Such symptoms include the following:
No two Phase 1 orthodontic treatment plans are exactly the same. Your child’s plan is individualized based on the alignment of their teeth and other dental concerns. We can utilize various types of orthodontic appliances depending on the situation. For instance, an expander gradually widens the upper jaw or palate to make plenty of room for adult teeth to erupt. If a baby tooth has come out earlier than it should have, your child may need a space maintainer to prevent the surrounding teeth from drifting into the gap. In other cases, braces might be necessary for a short amount of time.
Generally, Phase 1 treatment lasts between 10 to 14 months, but the exact timeline will be determined by the changes needed. We will monitor the growth and development of your child’s mouth after Phase 1 treatment, and if necessary, we can begin Phase II orthodontics around age 11, when most permanent teeth will have erupted.