Many people associate wearing braces with teenagers, but we can uncover problems with the teeth and jawgrowth much earlier, while the primary or “baby” teeth are present. According to current guidelines from American Association of Orthodontists (AAO), every child should have a check up by an orthodontist before they are 7 years old.
By age 7, enough permanent teeth have arrived for us to evaluate relationships developing between the child’s teeth, jaw and bite. We can determine if there is a problem, and make a recommendation for the best time to begin treatment.
An early visit to the orthodontist can take away any worries about the child’s teeth. Our recommendation may simply be ‘let's wait and see’ while the face and jaws continue to grow.
Some of the more readily apparent conditions that indicate the need for an examination include:
· early or late loss of baby teeth
· difficulty in chewing or biting
· mouth breathing
· thumb sucking
· crowding, misplaced or blocked-out teeth
· jaws that shift or make sounds
· speech difficulties
· biting the cheek or the roof of the mouth
· teeth that meet abnormally, or don’t meet at all
· facial imbalance
· jaws that are too far forward or back
· grinding or clenching of the teeth
Protrusive teeth can be prone to injury, another reason why an orthodontic check up by age 7 is important.
If you have questions about your child, just call our office at 631-427-8444.