Did you know the American Association Of Orthodontists (AAO) recommends all children be seen for an orthodontic evaluation by age 7? While most parents think of orthodontic treatment for their teens and tweens, there are actually big benefits to having regular orthodontic check-ins for younger children too! Bailey Orthodontics offer free early evaluations and complimentary growth and development visits until your child is ready to begin treatment. We make sure that these visits are positive, fun and informative!
Why Age 7?
By age 7, enough permanent teeth and molars have emerged to evaluate the relationship between teeth, jaws and bite to allow and orthodontist to determine if everything is developing normally. Identification of problems at an early age while teeth are still developing and the jaw is still growing may make them easier to address. Even if your child’s teeth look straight, there may be underlying problems that may be beneficial to identify early. With our advanced technology and our doctors expertise we are able to evaluate your child’s needs to identify any problems that need to be monitored or addressed.
Reasons Why an Orthodontic Evaluation is Important:
- Monitor growth and development
- Address any harmful habits
- Recognize missing or extra teeth
- Evaluate jaw growth
- Observe tooth eruption
- Identify the need for early treatment, if necessary
- Give your child confidence in his or her smile
Growth & Monitoring
Early visits can give us a baseline to start with. From there we can monitor your child’s growth and development to pinpoint the ideal time to start treatment in order to get the best results as efficiently as possible.
What We Look For
- Oral Habits (finger or thumb sucking, tongue thrusting or mouth breathing)
- Early or late loss of baby teeth, which may be at an increased risk of trauma
- Difficulty chewing or biting
- Crossbite of the front teeth (may cause trauma to the edges of the front teeth or indicate an unfavorable growth pattern)
- Crossbite of the back teeth (may cause the jaw to shift and or grow off to one side)
- An appearance your child may be embarrassed by
The Right Treatment at the Right Time
We treat conservatively and only recommend early intervention if there is a clear benefit. We very rarely treat children at age 7 at our practice. However, if early orthodontic treatment is necessary, intercepting the problem early can prevent the need for lengthy treatment, extractions or surgery. With early treatment we can more easily guide the growth of their teeth and jaws to set the stage for lasting results.
Benefits of Early Treatment
- Correcting facial asymmetry by guiding jaw growth
- Fixing crossbites
- Guide tooth eruption to encourage permanent teeth to come in straight
- Make more space for crowded teeth
- Create adequate space for permanent teeth to come in as straight as possible
- Break harmful oral habits like thumb sucking or tongue thrusting
- Reduce the risk of dental injury by fixing protruding teeth
- Help your child chew, speak and breathe easier
- Prevent the need for jaw surgery or extractions as a teenager or adult
- Make treatment in the teenage years faster, easier and more affordable
- Boost confidence and self-esteem
- A spectacular smile!
Early visits to our office give us the opportunity to introduce your child to our doctors and staff to help them become comfortable in an orthodontic office environment. This can be especially helpful for children with dental or situational anxiety. Our office also has a support dog named Ralphie, Who loves to welcome patients into our office and help sooth those who maybe feeling anxious.
Ready to join the 7 & Up Kids Club?
Joining the club is completely free! The goal of the is to stay ahead of any developing problems in order to minimize more complicated, costly and lengthy treatment down the road. The 7 & Up Kids Club can give your child the best opportunity for a beautiful, healthy smile as they continue to grow. Schedule your free exam today!