Early treatment may be necessary for the proper development and growth of your child’s teeth and jaws. According to the American Association of Orthodontics, your child should be examined by an orthodontist at age 7.
At this age, we can begin monitoring the development of your child’s bite and bone structure to determine the best time to begin treatment. Dr. Glass is a big proponent of palatal expansion which is most successful at an early age. Palatal expansion is a painless process that allows for widening of the upper jaw. Most phase I treatments at Glass Orthodontics are centered around expansion and improving crowding that is blocking adult teeth from coming in. Not all children benefit from phase I treatment and Dr. Glass enjoys educating parents on why their child may or may not need early orthodontic treatment.
Benefits of Early Treatment
Early treatment, or Phase I treatment, allows us to catch potential problems early before they get worse. Catching bite issues and crowding before they become complicated can drastically reduce treatment and costs later down the road. Palatal expansion can improve the upper airway and help your child breath better. If you wait until your child hits the teenage years, you can greatly increase the chances of needing more lengthy and costly orthodontic treatment.
Risks of a Bad Bite
When bite issues are left untreated, the potential for other health issues increases. For example, if your child suffers from overly crowded teeth, it can become difficult to properly clean the surface of every tooth. Flossing can be a hard habit to instill in your child, but it becomes even more difficult when the task of flossing is cumbersome. To keep tooth decay and gum disease at bay, a healthy bite and correct spacing are essential. Other orthodontic issues, such as open bites and overbites, can also mean teeth are more prone to chipping and early wear as well as speech impediments.
If your child is at least 7 years old, don’t delay! Contact us today to set up an appointment. We can evaluate your child’s smile for potential issues. Our goal is to help create a healthier, more beautiful smile for your child that lasts a lifetime.