How Young is Too Young for Braces for My Child?

Many parents begin to notice in the grade school years that their kids’ crooked smiles are cute but may affect their child’s confidence–or even their health. During the grade school ages, permanent teeth come in and bite problems are often detected during these years. Having crooked teeth or a crossbite, an overbite, an underbite, or other type of bite issue could impact your child’s speech development, ability to chew different types of food, and social confidence. At this point many parents begin to ask, when should I consult a Scottsdale orthodontist for braces for my child? Should we wait and see what happens in the teen years, or should we seek treatment now? Here are some simple guidelines to help you make the decision on whether to take your pre-teen into an orthodontist.

Does your child have bite or palate problems?

These types of issues will not go away over time will result in getting braces in Phoenix. They can often be treated more easily in the early years well the mouth is still developing. Often, orthodontic work done during the pre-teen years will be more rapid than the same work done on an older teen or an adult. However, there is always the risk of wisdom teeth coming in and messing up the orthodontic work. It is also important to make sure your child is mature enough to keep her teeth clean and healthy throughout orthodontic treatment.

Dental insurance and braces for my child?

Many parents do not realize that orthodontic insurance coverage is usually available with regular dental insurance plans. That means that even if you had orthodontic work done recently on your child and he later needed a bit of a touch-up, it could still be covered. There is usually a yearly or lifetime maximum on orthodontic plans per person. Check into your dental and orthodontic coverage now because you may be surprised by how much do braces cost with insurance. Most dental insurance plans will cover 50% of the cost of orthodontic treatment.

Are your child’s teeth so crooked or unsightly that they cause him or her to not want to smile?

If your child’s teeth are extremely crooked or doubled up in places (with one tooth growing in directly behind another tooth), this can be a cosmetic issue, but it can also affect your child’s confidence. If you feel that this is the case, you may want to check into orthodontics in Litchfield Park early on for braces for my child. However,  you will want to make sure that your child has a retainer placed after treatment is completed. Without retainers, teeth can shift and mess up even the most careful orthodontic work.

Are dental problems causing speech irregularities?

Certain dental issues (including palate problems, thumb sucking) can make it difficult to articulate certain sounds in speech. Remember the song “All I want for Christmas is My Two Front Teeth”? It often sounded more like “awl I want fo Kwismas” because it was sung by a kid who missing his front teeth. That classic song shows what irregular spacing or gaps in the mouth can do to speech. Speech pathologists have noted the connection between oral health and lisping, articulation issues, speech problems, stuttering, and other speech issues. If your child has any of these issues, you may want to look into orthodontic treatment at an earlier age.

The bottom line is that orthodontic treatment can be performed on patients of any age. Many parents wait until the teen years to begin orthodontic treatment. This is not always the best option for all patients. You can set up a free consultation at Dunn Orthodontics. Find out if orthodontic treatment is a good option at this point in your child’s development. Click here to schedule an appointment or to learn more about Dunn Orthodontics.

Schedule a Free Consultation