First Checkup About Age 7
Our doctors agree with the recommendations of the American Association of Orthodontists – it is important for every child to undergo an orthodontic evaluation between ages 7 and 8 in order to identify the relatively small group of patients who need early treatment. Our recommendation is based on the fact that by this age, most children have a mix of baby teeth and adult teeth, making it easier for the orthodontist to diagnose and correct tooth and jaw problems sooner and without surgery.
We further recommend that children who have not had an orthodontic evaluation by the age of 11 or 12 should do so, as it’s usually around that age that the last baby teeth are lost.
Early treatment allows your doctor to:
- Correct and guide the growth of your child’s jaw to help the permanent teeth come in straight
- Regulate the width of the upper and lower arches
- Create more space for crowded teeth
- Avoid the need for permanent tooth extractions later in life, thus creating a full mouth
- Correct thumb sucking and help improve minor speech problems
The AAO recommends that every child have an orthodontic check-up by age 7.American Association of Orthodontists
Does your child need to see an orthodontist?
Here are a few things to look for:
- Early or late loss of baby teeth
- A hard time chewing or biting food
- Mouth breathing
- Finger or thumb sucking
- Crowded, misplaced, or blocked teeth
- Jaws that pop or make sounds when opening and closing
- Teeth that come together abnormally, or do not come together at all
- Jaws and teeth that are not proportionate to the rest of the face
- Crowded front teeth around age 7 or 8