Patient Guidelines During COVID-19

What's the Best Age to Begin Orthodontic Treatment?

Your child’s first orthodontic visit should be by age 7, which is probably earlier than you thought. While you’re probably still negotiating with the tooth fairy at that age, your child most likely has enough permanent teeth for a dental professional to evaluate their teeth and jaw. 

Your child’s orthodontic treatment won’t start at age seven unless there’s an orthodontic problem, but it’s good to get an early evaluation. An early evaluation can help you understand what may lie ahead regarding your child’s bite and teeth and identify potential issues that should be monitored.

At CaliDental in Lompoc and San Luis Obispo, California, our family dental experts can evaluate your child to advise on any orthodontic treatment they may need now or in the future, and answer any questions related to your child’s dental health. Read on to learn about when to start orthodontic treatment and why an early evaluation is recommended.

When does orthodontic treatment usually start?

Most kids start orthodontic treatment after they’ve lost most of their baby teeth, which is usually between ages eight and 14. However, with an early evaluation, your dentist or orthodontist may choose to start preventative care that can help either your child avoid braces or wear them for a shorter time frame.

The reason eight to 14 is the ideal age is because not only does your child have most of their permanent teeth, but their jaws and faces are still growing. Some reasons for orthodontics include:

However, if you notice these issues before age 8, a dental professional may recommend preventative care or early treatment. Most of these dental issues are inherited, but other times, they can be the result of thumb sucking, an accident, dental disease, or swallowing problems.

Types of orthodontic treatments

Fortunately, there are many options from which you and your child can choose. Your dentist will help you decide the best treatment option for your child. Some options include:

Usually, your child will have to wear braces for about two years and then a retainer at night after that. Not all dental issues can be addressed by orthodontic treatment options. Additionally, if you’re interested in fixing your smile or alignment, it’s not too late! Many adults get braces to improve their smile.

Ready to schedule an orthodontic evaluation for you or your child? Call CaliDental to make an appointment today.

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