Early Orthodontic Treatment
Early examination of the teeth and jaws in younger children (ages 7-10 yrs) allows us to detect and evaluate developing problems and plan the best timing for treatment. In some young patients with specific jaw growth or bite related problems, early treatment will prevent these problems from worsening and potentially avoid the need for future surgical intervention. For children with large overbites, early treatment can prevent physical trauma to protruding front teeth and reduce emotional distress if teasing is occurring. When prescribed, early orthodontic intervention will also result in shorter and less complicated second phase treatment should braces or clear aligners be required when older.
With this in mind, it is recommended that children receive a specialist orthodontic assessment by no later than 10 years of age – should a parent or dentist suspect a problem. Remember – you do not need a referral from a dentist to see an orthodontist. Just call to book an appointment for your child if you have any concerns.
Depending on the presenting problem, early orthodontic treatment may involve the use of removable plates, arch expansion devices (eg Quadhelix, RME) , anti-habit appliances, space maintainers or partial braces.