St. Paul, MN– Many parents wonder when and how often their children should visit the orthodontist, especially when they’re first-timers. Though baby teeth are still moving around and falling out of the mouth, it’s important to get children into the orthodontist relatively early in life.
Officially, the American Association of Orthodontists recommends that children be seen by an orthodontist beginning at their 7th birthday. A St. Paul-based orthodontist agrees. “While many parents realize good oral care is crucial for their child’s well-being, they don’t always realize that this includes a visit to the orthodontist by age seven.”
What’s So Special about Age Seven?
There are many reasons seven is the recommended age for an orthodontist visit. Here are some of them:
- A combination of teeth: Though most orthodontic treatment begins at age 9 or later, at age 7, most children have both primary (“baby”) and secondary (“permanent”) teeth. This combination allows the orthodontist to see any existing problems with the child’s jaw growth, as well as the health and stability of the overall bite.
- Prevention is key: While most children won’t require orthodontic treatment just yet, it’s the perfect time to prevent much more serious problems from occurring. An ORTHODONTIST notes, “This is when we can save time and money down the road, which is best for children and their parents.”
- Early intervention: Along with prevention, early intervention can allow the orthodontist to correct existing problems in the child’s mouth. For example, thumb sucking can be tackled at this point, before it causes further oral health damage.
- Parent education: An early trip to the orthodontist can help parents identify problems afterward at home. For example, parents can start looking for behaviors like continual cheek biting, mouth breathing, teeth grinding, and difficulty chewing or swallowing. They can also note overcrowding of teeth, missing or extra teeth, and early or late loss of primary teeth.
- Setting up good health habits: A first visit will show the child how important it is to get assessed early on, and that it’s normal to seek medical assistance before problems are obvious. Most children’s first orthodontic visits are fine, and if they’re not, early detection of issues will prove extremely beneficial.
“In the end, it’s just good practice to get checkups regularly to allow you and your child the peace of mind that comes from taking care of all aspects of your health,” an ORTHODONTISTconcludes.
For your child’s first orthodontist visit, schedule a free consultation with an ORTHODONTIST today! You can also call (651) 447-6768 to set up an appointment.
About Us: Your ORTHODONTIST and team are knowledgeable dental professionals, helping people in the Minneapolis and St. Paul areas achieve their perfect smiles. Your doctor is one of Minnesota’s top orthodontists, offering competent, experienced and compassionate care to all her patients.
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