Many parents assume they must wait until their child has all of his or her permanent teeth in the mouth to have their first orthodontic check-up. The American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) recommends that every child get a check-up with an orthodontist no later than age 7. “I would like to emphasize how important it is that parents understand the value of an orthodontic check- up,” says Dr. Reagin. “By age 7, enough permanent teeth have erupted for an orthodontist to evaluate relationships between the teeth, face, and bite”.
At your 1st appointment, the initial orthodontic exam, Dr. Reagin may find that your child’s bite is fine; however Dr. Reagin may identify a developing problem and recommend monitoring the child’s growth and development at a consistent interval. In other cases Dr. Reagin may find a problem that would benefit from early treatment. Evidence shows that approximately 25% of children seen at an initial orthodontic exam can benefit from early orthodontic intervention.
Early treatment benefits include:
- Guide jaw growth
- Lower the risk of trauma to protruding front teeth
- Correct harmful oral habits
- Create space for erupting teeth
- Improve appearance and self esteem
- Guide permanent teeth into a more favorable position
When indicated, early treatment may often prevent more serious problems from developing and make treatment at a later stage shorter and less complicated. In some cases Dr. Reagin will be able to achieve results that may not be possible once the face and jaw have finished growing.
“A visit to the orthodontist can ease a parent’s mind, too,” notes Dr. Reagin. Through an early orthodontic evaluation, you’ll be giving your child the very best opportunity for a healthy, beautiful smile.
Keep in mind that if your child is older than 7, it’s certainly not too late for a check-up at Reagin Orthodontics. Dr. Reagin’s goal is to provide each patient with the appropriate treatment at the most appropriate time.
To schedule a complimentary consult with Dr. Reagin call our office at 843-871-4411. Note that a dental referral is not necessary.