For a Lifetime of Beautiful Smiles

Early Orthodontic Treatment in Hewlett, NY

While there’s no specific age for beginning orthodontic treatment, the American Association of Orthodontists recommends that children should have their initial orthodontic evaluation no later than age 7. Although most children still have a mix of baby and adult teeth, it’s an excellent opportunity to diagnose tooth and jaw issues and start planning for suitable treatment to facilitate the development of a healthy, straight smile.

Starting treatment before your child hits double digits may sound early, but it ensures optimal results while minimizing time and expenses. It allows our team to begin proactively monitoring and identifying suitable treatment plans to ensure your child develops a perfect, straight smile as an adult.

What Is Early Orthodontic Treatment?

Early orthodontic treatment, also known as phase 1 treatment, starts while your child still has some or all of their primary teeth. It aims to correct challenging jaw and bite problems as they develop and make room for permanent teeth to come in properly.

Early treatment can help simplify or even solve orthodontic issues as they happen, which in turn reduces the chance of future teeth extractions, and lessens the complexity and length of phase 2 orthodontic treatment. Typical phase 1 treatment plans include palatal expanders, partial braces, or retainers.

What Are the Benefits of Early Orthodontic Treatment?

Early treatment can help guide growth and development and prevent numerous dental issues, as well as the need for more invasive procedures in the future. If your child doesn’t need immediate orthodontic intervention, it’s still a great time to begin tracking the growth and development of your child to prepare for potential treatment needs later on. Here are some of the main benefits of early orthodontic treatment:

  • Guides proper jaw growth, preventing the development of skeletal issues.
  • Creates space, reducing crowding and minimizing the risk of impacted teeth.
  • Reduces the risk of protruding front teeth breaking or chipping.
  • Enhances self-esteem and confidence through improved dental aesthetics.
  • Minimizes the need for corrective jaw surgery or extractions in the future.
  • Reduces the duration and cost of subsequent orthodontic treatments, such as Invisalign or braces, during the teenage years.
  • Promotes effective teeth cleaning and maintains optimal oral hygiene.
  • Prevents premature loss of teeth and facilitates healthy dentition.
  • Addresses bite problems, enhancing proper chewing and biting functions.
  • Helps prevent dental trauma by addressing issues early on.
  • Saves time and money by reducing the need for extensive treatments later in life.
  • Aids in addressing speech and breathing difficulties from misaligned jaws and teeth.

What Problems Does Early Orthodontic Treatment Address?

Early orthodontic intervention can address numerous issues your child may face, preventing dental problems from worsening over time. The primary goal of early treatment is to mitigate and correct developing issues, address the root cause, guide the growth of facial and jaw bones, and ensure sufficient space for incoming permanent teeth.

Dr. Paley or Dr. Sacks may recommend to begin proactively correcting issues as they develop during phase 1 of treatment. Some of the main problems early orthodontic treatment addresses include:

  • Underbites (lower front teeth positioned ahead of upper front teeth)
  • Crossbites (jaw shifting to one side)
  • Significant crowding of teeth
  • Excessive spacing between teeth
  • Presence of extra or missing teeth
  • Abnormal tooth alignment, including teeth meeting abnormally or not meeting at all
  • Thumb-sucking affecting dental and jaw growth

Is My Child a Candidate for Phase 1 Orthodontic Treatment?

Your child may be an excellent candidate to begin phase 1 orthodontic treatment if they are facing any of the following issues:

  • Early or late loss of baby teeth
  • Difficulty chewing or biting food
  • Mouth breathing
  • Jaws that pop or make sounds when opening and closing
  • Abnormal tooth alignment, including teeth that don’t come together correctly
  • Disproportionate jaws and teeth in relation to the face
  • Crowded front teeth around age seven or eight
  • Crowded front teeth around age seven or eight
  • Improper bite (teeth that don’t come together correctly)
  • Shifting of the jaw during mouth opening or closing (crossbites)
  • Speech issues
  • Protruding teeth (top and bottom teeth extending away from each other)
  • Severe crowding
  • Persistent thumb-sucking after age five

Start Phase 1 Orthodontic Treatment at Five Towns Orthodontics Today!

Addressing orthodontic issues while your child’s teeth are still falling out and coming in may seem strange, but this period provides an incredible opportunity to address problems before they arise. Early orthodontics can prevent an alignment problem from developing at all, or stop a problem before it becomes severe.

Schedule a complimentary appointment for a complete orthodontic evaluation. Our experts will conduct an initial examination and discuss the best course of action to ensure your child develops a healthy, beautiful smile. Contact us directly or schedule a time to visit below!