EARLY ORTHODONTIC TREATMENT

The American Association of Orthodontists recommend that children be seen by an orthodontist by the age of 7 years. Most often no treatment is recommended at that time, however often problems that can eventually be expensive, require extraction of permanent teeth and/or surgical treatment can be avoided or at least less severe than they would have been without treatment.

Not all permanent need to be present before starting orthodontic treatment and females can sometimes be finished growing by the time all the permanent teeth have erupted. In these cases, extraction of teeth, surgery and/or periodontal gum grafting may be required.

Also be aware that some conditions that look like a problem are completely normal. It is normal to have 1-2mm of lower incisor crowding in the early mixed dentition (when there a mix of both adult and baby teeth). It is also normal for a child to have a chin that is relatively recessive rather than the typical adult profile and chin position. Normal growth will often allow the chin to grow with or without an expensive appliance.

It is normal to display a end to end or half cusp Class II molar relationship 50% of the time in the mixed dentition (see below). A normal adult Class I relationship is seen only 30% of the time in the mixed dentition. So again, if an appliance is placed to correct a 1/2 cusp Class II molar relationship remember that 75% of the time it would have done so spontaneously without the appliance.

Basically, our no-cost consultation should encourage you to come in and find out how things look and gather some information to allow an informed treatment decision about which are yours or your child’s best orthodontic options.

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