Orthodontics for children

Pediatric orthodontist in Lawrence & Topeka, KS

There’s no minimum age for your child to begin orthodontic treatment, but the American Association of Orthodontists recommends a child receive their first orthodontic evaluation by around the age of seven.

Early orthodontic treatment

Early orthodontic problems can arise at a very young age. Early treatment may prevent or intercept more serious problems from developing and may make treatment at a later age shorter and less complicated.

In some cases, Dr. Wood will be able to achieve results that may not be possible once the face and jaws have finished growing. Skeletal changes in jaw structure can only be achieved at a young age before development is complete. Long-term destructive habits such as thumb sucking can lead to permanent skeletal modifications making future correction extremely difficult.

Only certain orthodontic problems require early intervention. Most of our patients can wait until most if not all of their permanent teeth erupt to begin their orthodontic treatment.

Young boy having his teeth looked at

Signs the bite’s not right

It’s not always easy to tell when your child may need braces or has an orthodontic problem. Even teeth that look straight may be hiding a problem bite.

Here are some clues that may indicate the need for orthodontic attention:

  • Early or late loss of baby teeth
  • Difficulty chewing or biting
  • Breathing through the mouth
  • Thumb-sucking
  • Crowded, misplaced or blocked-out teeth
  • Jaws that are too far forward or back
  • Biting the cheek or biting into the roof of the mouth
  • Protruding teeth
  • Upper and lower teeth that don’t meet, or meet in an abnormal way
  • An unbalanced facial appearance
  • Grinding or clenching of the teeth

Choosing the best time for treatment:

While the age kids get braces may vary, orthodontic treatment most often begins between the ages of 9 and 14. Some orthodontic problems are easier to correct if they’re treated early, with options such as Invisalign® First for kids.

If Dr. Wood thinks your child will need treatment, he’ll let you know when it will be best to begin treatment. This gives your orthodontist the best chance to:

  • Guide jaw growth

  • Correct harmful oral habits

  • Lower the risk of trauma to protruded front teeth

  • Improve appearance and self-esteem in your child

  • Guide permanent teeth into a more favorable position

  • Create a more pleasing arrangement of teeth, lips and face

Does my child need early orthodontic treatment?

While most children can achieve a beautiful smile in their teenage years, it doesn’t work in all situations. Book an appointment with Dr. Wood to determine if early childhood treatment is a good option for you! We can talk about your child’s orthodontic options and develop a treatment plan customized to your child’s needs.

We can’t wait to meet you!

  • 5 star rating out of 5

    The staff works so well with children of all ages. My daughter was very apprehensive about having braces. Dr Wood and his staff helped my daughter to feel very comfortable and she was excited about going in for her next appt. She now has an amazing SMILE! Thank you Oread Orthodontics!

    5 Star Rating

  • 5 star rating out of 5

    I wouldn’t trust my kids to just any orthodontist which is why I chose Oread Orthodontics. My son enjoys his appointments because the staff is so friendly. Not to mention that my son’s teeth look AMAZING!!

    5 Star Rating