Orthodontics for Children
The American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) recommends that children be seen by an orthodontist by the age of 7 to screen for developing issues. At this age, children still have baby teeth and treatment at this time is referred to as “Phase I” orthodontics. Phase I treatment may not prevent the need for full orthodontic treatment in the future, but it will likely make treatment less complicated and provide your child more treatment options when he/she is ready for braces.
We typically only recommend Phase I treatment for the following reasons:
- To make and/or preserve space for the adult teeth to erupt into their correct positions.
- To correct bite discrepancies so that the jaws can grow symmetrically.
- If there are social concerns that are affecting the child’s self esteem.
- If there is a finger-sucking habit present that is influencing the development of the teeth/jaws.
Often, we find that the jaws and teeth are developing without issue and no treatment is needed. In this case, we will see your child every 6 months at no cost so that we can monitor their growth and development. During these monitoring visits, we will continue to look for developing issues and recommend treatment, if necessary.
White Rock Orthodontics believes in conservative Phase I treatment and will only treat children this young if it is a necessity. We believe that all of our patients, especially young children, should LOVE coming to see us, so we try to limit Phase I treatment to less than one year. In addition, your child will be enrolled in our Early Smiles Club to help keep them motivated and excited for their orthodontic appointments!