Misaligned teeth or malocclusion is an orthodontic problem caused by a variety of factors, including genetics, thumb-sucking, and accidents. A misaligned bite can cause problems to your child’s teeth and gums, as well as affect their speech and chewing.

When Should My Child Have Their First Orthodontic Evaluation?

The American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) recommends that your child see an orthodontist for the first time around the age of seven. Even though they may not have all of their permanent teeth, this appointment allows your orthodontist to identify potential issues with your child’s teeth and jaw early on.

If your child is experiencing any of the following issues, it’s a good idea to have their first evaluation sooner rather than later:

Early Orthodontic Treatment Benefits

The American Association of Orthodontists recommends that children receive their first orthodontic evaluation by the age of seven. At this age, orthodontic appliances such as braces are quite effective and can improve your child’s smile by correcting alignment issues, such as overbites or crossbites.

Early treatment can bring the following benefits:

  • Reduce the risk of damage to jaw bones and teeth during childhood.
  • Keep permanent teeth healthy and straight.
  • Reduce or eliminate the risk of tooth decay or gum disease in the future.
  • Reduce the risk of future orthodontic problems.

Early Orthodontic Treatment For Children

Many parents wonder if they should bring their child to an orthodontist at an early age. Though orthodontists treat patients of all ages, it’s recommended that parents bring their children to their first appointment around the age of seven. At this point, most children have all of their primary teeth, and the orthodontist can evaluate the state of their dental health.

Early orthodontic treatment can be very beneficial, as the orthodontist can guide the growth of the jaw and incoming permanent teeth. Treatment may include using expanders, braces, or partial braces.

When children get their first pair of braces, they are usually between seven and nine years old. At this stage, the permanent teeth are starting to come in. Orthodontic treatment at this age is often recommended to “correct” the way these teeth will grow in.

The earlier orthodontic care begins, the easier it will be to treat. Children who get braces at a young age typically experience less discomfort and require fewer orthodontic adjustments than those who wear them at an older age.

Adult Orthodontic Treatments

Orthodontic treatments aren’t just for kids. In fact, the American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) states that one in five orthodontic patients is over the age of 21. Many adults undergo orthodontic treatment for cosmetic reasons or to treat bite problems. Adult orthodontic devices include Invisalign, metal braces, ceramic braces, Damon braces, etc.

Adult orthodontic treatment can help correct teeth that are crowded or crooked. Additionally, orthodontic treatment can help correct bite problems that develop over time.

Call us at (818) 789-2034 or schedule an appointment to have a consultation with Dr. Daniel Tebbi at our practice in Encino, CA.