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The Best Age to Go to the Orthodontist

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Because every child develops at a different rate, there is no set age that determines when they should have their first orthodontic appointment. This can lead to some confusion among parents to know when to set up the first meeting with the orthodontist. If orthodontic care is in your child’s future, learn when it will be best to take them in for their first appointment.


The reasons for braces


To first understand when kids need braces, it is important to take a look at why they will need them. There are a few common reasons why kids need braces in the first place. Some of the most common of these are overlapping teeth, crooked teeth, overcrowded teeth, or malocclusion – which is when the top and the bottom jaw bones don’t line up causing either an overbite or underbite.


There are a number of factors that can cause these problems. In children, one of the most common is when baby teeth have fallen out too soon, making the path difficult for permanent teeth to follow. Thumb sucking or using bottles for too long can also cause problems that need orthodontic assistance. Besides these preventable problems, genetics plays a factor in the way teeth come in.


The first visit


There is no set age to start taking kids to the orthodontist, but there is one for going to the dentist. Your child should have their first dental appointment by their first birthday. The dentist can tell you fairly early whether or not they will need braces, and at what age this should occur. This might be as early as six years old for some or in the later teenage years.


Just because your child has a need for orthodontic care early on doesn’t mean they will immediately get braces. There may be a situation that requires spacers or other appliances that are needed to prepare the teeth for braces later on. A dentist can assess the needs of every child at their six month appointment and determine when including braces will be the best option.


Here at Burg, we have dentists that know when it is best for kids to meet with Dr. Christensen, our orthodontist. By getting them in at the optimal time for them, their orthodontic care will be more successful than ever.

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