Are you wondering if your child may need to see an orthodontist? Maybe your dentist has pointed out some potential issues with your child’s teeth and has recommended an orthodontic evaluation. Perhaps you’ve noticed that your child’s teeth aren’t coming in straight or look crowded. Whether or not you have any concerns about your child’s teeth, you should not hesitate to schedule a consultation.
At What Age Should My Child Have an Orthodontic Evaluation?
There’s no certain age when every child should have an orthodontic evaluation. The right tie should be determined by the child’s dental age more than their actual age. Once the front permanent teeth have erupted and appear to be fully in place and if there appear to be any orthodontic issues, such as crowding, your dentist may recommend that your child see an orthodontist.
The average age range for a first time orthodontic evaluation is 7-9 years old. While it may not be time for braces just yet, there may be other early orthodontic treatments that can be done that will prevent problems from developing or escalating into more serious conditions. A little prevention can go a long way.
What is Two-Phase Orthodontics?
You may have heard the term “two-phase orthodontics” used by dentists or orthodontists. This term refers to the fact that orthodontic treatment often achieves better results when it is divided into two phases.
The first phase refers to early orthodontics, the treatments that are most often done between the ages of 7 and 9. The second phase, which most commonly involves braces, takes place between the ages of 10 and 14. Phase I prepares the teeth for Phase II, making the second phase much more effective. The first phase also prevents orthodontic issues from causing irreversible damage to the permanent teeth in the childhood years.
Is it Ever Too Late to Have an Orthodontic Evaluation?
No, it’s never too late to have your teeth evaluated by an orthodontist. If your child is already past the age range for the first phase of orthodontics, don’t worry. Your child’s teeth can still be corrected later in their adolescent or teenage years.
Even if you’re an adult, it is still possible to have your orthodontic issues corrected. If you want straighter teeth or you have suffered some of the effects of a misaligned bite pattern (such as headaches or jaw pain), you can start orthodontic treatment at any time in your life.
What are the Different Types of Orthodontic Treatment?
Early orthodontics can involve a variety of different orthodontic treatments such as palate expanders and retainers that take advantage of the child’s growth in order to reshape or expand the jaw to make room for crowded teeth or to adjust the bite.
Later orthodontic treatment typically involves braces or clear teeth alignment systems such as Invisalign or ClearCorrect. Both teens and adults like the fact that Invisalign and ClearCorrect are virtually invisible so that you can straighten your teeth more subtly. The clear plastic aligners are also more comfortable and convenient because you can easily remove them to eat or brush your teeth.
Savannah Dental Solutions Also Provides Orthodontics
Every child should have an orthodontic evaluation to determine if orthodontic treatment is necessary. The majority of children need some form or orthodontic correction. The good news is that you don’t need to leave Savannah Dental Solutions to have an orthodontic evaluation. We provide orthodontic screenings and care for children, teens, and adults. We offer both Invisalign and ClearCorrect teeth alignment systems.
Call (912) 354-1366 or contact us today to schedule an orthodontic evaluation. We look forward to helping you achieve and maintain healthy, straight, teeth.
What Will Happen at My Kid’s First Orthodontic Appointment?
If your child has been referred to an orthodontist, it is normal to feel stressed out and a bit overwhelmed. Orthodontic care can seem complex, and you might worry about everything from how your child will feel to how you will pay for treatment. Fortunately, there is no need for concern. The pediatric orthodontics staff will walk you through each step of the process. Here is what to expect at your child’s first appointment and beyond.
Most pediatric orthodontics appointments begin with introductions and a brief office tour. This helps both you and your child to feel comfortable and takes away a lot of the nervousness that occurs in an unfamiliar environment.
Next, the orthodontist will want to determine whether your child needs treatment, and what procedure(s) might be the best. Your child will receive a complete clinical examination, including x-rays and oral photos. The orthodontist will consider all of the clinical findings and provide a diagnosis and a thorough explanation of any issues that were found. Dental impressions may be taken to assist with treatment planning, or you may receive a recommended treatment plan first, with impressions taken right before treatment begins.
With the treatment plan in place, you will receive a detailed breakdown of costs, along with a full review of your insurance benefits and expected out of pocket payments. Staff will explain your options for payment plans and financing if needed.
You will receive a detailed description of any needed appliances such as braces or a palate expander, as well as an estimated treatment length. You will also learn how often your child will need appointments.
The appointment generally lasts for one to two hours, depending on the complexity of your child’s orthodontic needs. You will have plenty of time to ask questions and ensure that you fully understand what to expect.
If you choose to proceed with treatment, you will make an appointment for your child to have the appliance placed. At that appointment, you and your child will learn how to care for the appliance, and any new oral hygiene routines that must be used to care for the teeth while the appliance is in place.
In most cases, your child will need an appointment every 6 weeks or so. This allows the orthodontist to check the progression of treatment and make any needed adjustments. Your child may also need occasional emergency appointments, such as if a wire pops or severe mouth irritation develops. At the first appointment, you will learn what signs to look for to determine if a visit is needed.
Orthodontic treatment can seem scary, but there is no need for fear. Your child’s orthodontist and staff are there for you and your child every step of the way.
Married dentists Chad and Alexandra Schnabel welcome you to Savannah Dental Solutions. From caring children’s dentistry to high-tech cosmetic procedures and even full-mouth reconstruction, we blend the latest technology with traditional customer-oriented values. To start your journey to better oral health, call us today at (912) 354-1366.