For many parents, the thought of orthodontic treatment doesn’t occur until their child reaches the teenage years. However, every child’s teeth, bite and jaw alignment is different. In some cases, consulting with an orthodontic specialist may be beneficial prior to a child becoming a teenager.
Dr John Perry at Peak Orthodontics prides himself on a conservative approach to tooth movement, waiting for just the right time to start orthodontics. In some cases, it may be beneficial to start treatment at a young age to encourage healthy growth of the teeth and jaws. This is called early orthodontic treatment. However, in most cases we can wait until your child has most of their adult teeth before orthodontic treatment begins. For your peace of mind and to understand when it’s the right time to start treatment, we recommend booking an assessment whilst your child still has a mixture of baby and adult teeth.
What Is The Purpose of Early Orthodontic Treatment?
The main purpose of early orthodontic treatment is often preventative. The objectives are to make enough room for permanent teeth to erupt into the mouth and to correct any bite or jaw issues that may cause greater orthodontic problems as your child grows.
A common thought many parents have during this early treatment stage is that their child may ‘outgrow’ their early orthodontic treatment results. However, early orthodontic treatment works with your child’s growth, helping them grow into a better smile and setting up the platform for future adult teeth.
What Are The Signs That Your Child May Need Early Orthodontic Treatment?
There are several signs that Dr Perry will look for during your consultation. However, some common signs that you may be able to identify at home include:
- Thumb sucking after the age of 5.
- Early or delayed loss of baby teeth.
- Difficulties with biting or chewing.
- Protruding teeth.
- Narrow jaws.
If your child does present with any of these issues, we recommend contacting Peak Orthodontics today to find out more about our preventative orthodontic treatment options.
What Age Should My Child See An Orthodontist?
In most cases, early orthodontic treatment takes place when a child is between 7-10 years of age and may last anywhere from 6-12 months. Your general dentist or Community Dental Service may notice bite, jaw or spacing issues and recommend your child to get a specialist orthodontic opinion. However, a dentist referral isn’t necessary and if you have your own concerns you are welcome to call our practice directly on 03 595 6686 and book an initial consultation.