The most common question new parents ask us is at what age should their children be examined by an orthodontist for the first time?
The recommended age for the first preventive orthodontic check-up is between 6 and 8 years.
Why so early;
Because, at that point, any skeletal abnormalities, such as a narrow upper jaw, maxillary prognathism, can be diagnosed and treated in a simple and painless way.
Preventive orthodontic treatment as it is called in this phase contributes to the following:
- It influences and guides the correct development of the jaws.
- Reduces the risk of injury to protruding teeth.
- Corrects harmful oral habits such as thumb sucking.
- It improves the child’s appearance and self-confidence.
- It guides the permanent teeth to erupt properly.
What are the indications for a preventive orthodontic treatment? It is not always easy for a parent to tell if their child has a problem. Even straight teeth may hide some occlusal disorder. Some signs, however, can indicate the need for orthodontic treatment:
- Difficulty chewing or speaking
- Finger sucking
- Crowded teeth
- Protruding teeth
- Prognathism or retrognathism
- Premature loss of baby teeth Injury to the gums or palate
This phase lasts 12 to 16 months and mobile orthodontic appliances are usually used.
This is followed by a period of rest and monitoring until all permanent teeth erupt and if a 2nd treatment phase is needed later, it will be easier, faster and less expensive.
The benefits derived from the first phase of treatment are many, as it helps the jaws grow properly and reduces or eliminates future orthodontic problems.
With the development of technology, preventive orthodontic treatment can now also be carried out with digitally designed invisible braces (Invisalign first).
Thus, the treatment for our young patients can become invisible, painless, shorter, while we can also straighten the first permanent teeth and avoid future treatment.