This post is brought to you by Iennusa Orthodontics.
As a new parent you know that you have to take your child to the pediatrician several times their first year of life, to the eye doctor before their first birthday, and to the dentist on their first birthday. But you may not know what age a child should see an orthodontist. In fact, most people take their child for their first orthodontic appointment far later than they should.
So what’s the big deal? Why should you make sure your child makes it to the orthodontist early rather than later? Here are three big reasons.
1. The upper and lower jaws haven’t finished developing in young children. The upper and lower jaws in children are growing. If a child has a bad bite due to underdevelopment of the upper or lower jaws, early diagnosis and proper intervention can be beneficial. Once a child has reached early adolescence, the opportunity to correct some issues may have been missed. If the child is evaluated too late, often surgical intervention may be needed to assist with correction of the jaws. If evaluated at the appropriate time the orthodontist has several options from which to choose. An example is a device known as a Rapid Palatal Expander, which can be used to create more room in the jaw when needed. By waiting just a few years too long, you can miss this crucial time period and end up with fewer options.
2. Some dental issues should be addressed as soon as possible. While most orthodontic treatments will begin after all of a child’s adult teeth are in place, some can’t wait. When asked when the best time is to treat a crossbite, one professor of orthodontics replied, “yesterday.” In addition, crowded baby teeth are often a sign of potential issues with the permanent teeth, but an orthodontist can let you know for sure.
3. To protect adult teeth. In some instances, the mis-alignment of teeth can put a child’s adult teeth at risk. Young children with new permanent teeth are also the most likely to damage those teeth. In some cases, an orthodontist can help move teeth to keep them safe.
By now I hope I’ve convinced you to take your child to an orthodontist by the age of six or seven. Our sponsors at Iennusa Orthodontics offer free initial consultations just to check and see if there are any issues that need to be addressed immediately. In most cases a child will be sent home to let the rest of their adult teeth grow in, but in some cases a more rapid response is needed. Don’t miss this window of opportunity. Call 626-4779 to schedule an appointment.