Around this time of year, our patients’ insurances renew. Sometimes new benefits are added (including orthodontics). This typically results in us having parents call to ask, “When should my child come in to get braces?” This question tends to be a bit more complex to answer than many realize, since every child’s teeth and mouth develop differently. Even the growth of a child’s facial structure can be affected by children’s orthodontics. However, one thing that our entire team can easily answer is that the earlier you bring your child in for their first consultation with us, the better.

Although the exact age that a child should get braces varies, according to The American Association of Orthodontics a child should have their first orthodontic appointment scheduled around age 6 or 7. At this age we see most patient’s permanent teeth starting to grow in, making any serious orthodontic issues apparent right off the bat. But that does not mean treatment will be necessary right away! We may see that your child’s teeth seem to be growing in perfectly, that no action is needed for a few more years, or that there is a problem that could greatly benefit from immediate action.

Problems with a child’s bite or overcrowding are much easier to correct as your child’s jaw is still growing. For example, providing a palette expander at this point allows more room for incoming permanent teeth to grow into their correct alignment rather than having to be moved later. This can prevent lengthier or more difficult orthodontic treatment down the line, and potentially save you money on your child’s orthodontic treatment. 

Even with early orthodontic treatment, most children will still need braces later. That is why we refer to this early treatment as interceptive orthodontics. You can schedule your child’s first orthodontic consultation with our easy online scheduler HERE. If you have any further questions regarding the children’s orthodontics we offer, do not hesitate to call us at (704) 671-4051 – we are happy to help!