At what age should treatment start?
We usually only think of adolescence as the time to wear braces. The reason for this is because of the rapid growth that occur in this phase. This growth is needed as orthodontics is concerned not only with movement of the teeth, but with movement of the jaw also. Teeth can be moved at any age, but controlling the movement of the jaw can only happen in growing individuals.
What is the best age for a child to be evaluated by an orthodontist? There is no simple answer to this question. It is best to have your child evaluated at any age when you notice a problem. In most cases, everything will prove to be normal or the problem can be treated during adolescence. The guidelines of the American Association of Orthodontists recommend an orthodontic examination by age 7. At this age, the six-year molars and several other permanent teeth will have erupted, which will allow the orthodontist to evaluate any problems that may be developing.
Most young children do not need any treatment, but how can you tell for sure? Orthodontic problems do not cause any pain that would alert you when something is wrong. Orthodontists are not only experts in straightening teeth, they are also experts in the growth and development of your child’s mouth, jaw and face.
Some problems are easy to correct at an early age. However, if you wait too long, this can become a serious problem that will require extensive treatment. In some cases, children as young as 6 years of age will have significant problems. When jaw irregularities are present, having them treated early will not only prevent them from getting worse, it will also allow you to achieve a result that may not be possible when the jaw has finished growing. Early detection is the key.
An important thing to remember is that you are never too old to get braces! Although it is easier to get them at an early age, the truth is that healthy teeth can be moved at any age. Although most adult patients are in their 20s and 30s, it is not uncommon for patients to be in their 50s today. Some adult problems are easy to correct, while others can be complex.
Straight teeth are less prone to decay, chipping, and excessive wear. Orthodontics can also boost a person’s self-image by creating an attractive, healthy smile. With all the technological advances of the past few years, adults are now able to enjoy excellent results.