There are certain conditions that may qualify a child for early prevention orthodontics. These may include things like crossbites, crowded teeth or narrow arches. If crowded teeth are fixed at an earlier age, they allow more room for adult teeth to come in and may in turn reduce the need for teeth pulling later in life.
The American Association of Orthodontists and Dr. Garcia recommend kids see an orthodontist for an initial evaluation at age 7. At this age, permanent teeth are starting to replace baby teeth and it’s the perfect time to start tracking your child’s jaw growth and development. If necessary, Dr. Garcia may suggest getting your child started with the Phase One treatment to take advantage of bones that are still growing and better address problems before they develop fully.
Problems to Look For:
- Trouble breaking a thumb-sucking habit
- Speech impediment
- Jaws come together in an abnormal way when they bite
- Teeth do not come together or do so in an irregular manner
- Breathing issues
- Teeth protrude from the upper or lower jaw
- Problems with chewing and biting
- Early or late loss of baby teeth (they should start losing teeth at age 5 and have their adult teeth by age 13)