Children (ages 6-10)
A healthy, beautiful smile can ensure your child’s long-term health while improving their self-image and increasing their self-confidence. The American Association of Orthodontists recommends that all children have an orthodontic consultation by age 7. Some children may not require treatment until between the ages of 11 to 13. Patients with more complex cases or oral habits such as thumb sucking can benefit dramatically from an early phase of treatment, preventing the need for more invasive treatment later.
In addition to preventing serious tooth and jaw issues later in life, correcting misaligned teeth with braces or dental appliances can:
- Improve oral hygiene
- Facilitate better chewing to allow the body to absorb more nutrients from food
- Reduce the risk of lifestyle-related diseases such as diabetes and heart disease
- Improve breathing and eliminate speech impediments
The earlier your child receives orthodontic treatment, the sooner they will reap the resulting health benefits. Also, final treatment results will be more stable decreasing the chances of relapse.
Improving your child’s smile with braces or appliances such as palatal expanders can help to reduce appearance-consciousness during critical developmental years. In a study* published by the American Journal of Orthodontics, children as young as eight showed that after receiving treatment, they:
- Became happier
- Were less anxious
- Had more self-esteem
- Were able to focus better on studies
Orthodontists are specialists in their field and receive three years of additional education and training beyond general dentists. Orthodontists are specifically trained to identify any signs of improper tooth and/or jaw development early in life, which may otherwise be missed by a general dentist, enabling them to prescribe the appropriate corrective treatment at the ideal time in their development.
Having an early consultation with the our Orthodontist can help your child avoid more complex and expensive treatments later in life, and in some cases can eliminate the need for braces altogether.
* American Journal of Orthodontics & Dentofacial Orthopedics
Volume 135, Issue 5, Pages 580-585, May 2009