No matter what grade your child just started this school year, back-to-school season inevitably brings with it a long list of to-do items. There are new clothes to buy, school supplies to purchase, and permission forms to complete. For many parents, this is also the time to schedule their child’s annual pediatric doctor visit. But did you know that your child might also benefit from an orthodontic screening with an orthodontist this fall?
The American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) recommends that all young children receive a complete orthodontic screening with an orthodontic specialist no later than age seven. An orthodontist will be trained to identify problems with jaw growth and emerging teeth, even before children lose all of their baby teeth! In fact, even if your child’s teeth appear to be straight, there could be underlying problems with jaw growth and development that only a trained orthodontist can detect.
Back-to-school Orthodontic Screening for Young Children
If your child is aged seven but has never had an orthodontic screening, now is the time to schedule it. Early evaluation will give your child the best opportunity for a healthier smile. At Docbraces, we strive to proactively treat potential issues before they develop into more serious problems. This approach may help reduce the length of treatment your child needs at an older age or make this treatment less complicated.
Keep the following considerations in mind:
1. Every child is different. You may have had an older child who did not need braces or earlier orthodontic intervention. However, since every patient differs in both their physiological development and their treatment needs, you should not assume that what applies to one of your children will apply to the next. A comprehensive evaluation will ensure your child receives appropriate care at the right time.
2. Straight teeth do not mean everything is “okay”. Your child’s straight baby teeth could mask more serious developmental concerns that will not become evident until several years in the future. Without proactive treatment, these problems could lead to overcrowding or a crooked smile. By identifying these problems early, our orthodontist can take steps now to address these concerns before more serious issues arise.
3. Give your child the best opportunity for a healthy smile. With early intervention, our orthodontist can guide jaw growth, lower the risk of trauma to the front teeth, improve the way the lips meet, and guide permanent teeth into a more favourable position for a healthy, confident smile.
Pre-teens need orthodontic care, too.
For pre-teens with crooked teeth or jaw development concerns, an orthodontic screening is an opportunity to discuss a timeline for appropriate intervention. While many students get braces in middle school or high school, your pre-teen may benefit from earlier or later intervention. Scheduling a screening now will help your family better prepare for your pre-teen’s future orthodontic needs, including budgeting for the cost of treatment.
When you meet with your child’s orthodontist, expect an initial consultation followed by a treatment option discussion. The consultation may include diagnostic imaging such as X-rays to better visualize your child’s current jaw structure and ongoing treatment needs. Now is the time to ask about different straightening options, such as Invisalign, in addition to more traditional treatments like braces. For more information on what to expect during this visit, download our FREE “Parent’s Guide to the Benefits of Braces.”
At DocBraces, our team offers a wide variety of treatment options to meet you and your family’s needs. In addition to being an elite Invisalign provider, our experienced Halifax orthodontist offers second opinions and consultations. Payment plans are available to help
Next Steps: Schedule Your Child’s Orthodontic Evaluation
A “back-to-school” checkup is an opportunity to address a child’s overall health and any development concerns.
If your child is aged 7 and you have not already scheduled an orthodontic checkup, now is the time to schedule this evaluation. An early orthodontic evaluation gives your child the best opportunity for a healthy, beautiful smile. Contact the Docbraces team today to learn more.