Children: Good Dental Health Starts Early

Children:  Good Dental Health Starts Early 

As a parent, you want the best for your child.  That includes healthy teeth and a pleasing smile.  However, it’s not always easy to tell when your child has an orthodontic problem.  Even teeth that look straight may be hiding an unhealthy bite.  Here are some clues that the bite may not be right and may indicate the need for orthodontic attention:

  • Early or late loss of baby teeth
  • Difficulty in chewing or biting
  • Top teeth fitting behind or inside the bottom teeth
  • Thumb or finger sucking
  • Jaws that are too far forward or back
  • Cheek biting or biting into the roof of the mouth
  • Upper and lower teeth that don’t meet, or meet in an abnormal way

Some orthodontic issues are better treated earlier and others later.  The best age for a first visit to evaluate orthodontic needs is age 7 to ensure those early corrections can occur if warranted.  Most often orthodontic treatment begins between the ages of 9 and 14.  If it appears your child will need treatment at some point, the earlier they are checked the better informed you will be about the best time to begin.  Some results can only be possible if the jaws and face are still growing and some baby teeth are still in place.   If early treatment is indicated, it can give us the chance to:

  • Guide jaw positions
  • Guide permanent teeth into better positions
  • Improve appearance and self-esteem
  • Correct harmful oral habits