Pediatric Orthodontist in Toledo
While there is no exact age for children to begin orthodontic treatment, the American Association of Orthodontists recommends visiting the orthodontist around age seven.
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.
It is not uncommon for an orthodontist to recommend an interceptive phase of treatment if things look like they are not on course. This is called Phase I treatment and is a shorter round of treatment intended to get things “back on track.” After it is complete, patients are given a holiday and seen every few months until they are ready for comprehensive, or Phase II, treatment.
Early treatment allows your orthodontist 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 space for crowded teeth
- Avoid the need for permanent tooth extractions later in life
- Correct thumb sucking and help improve minor speech problems
For parents, it’s not always easy to know if your child may need orthodontic treatment.
Here are a few things to look for that may mean your child needs to see a pediatric orthodontist:
- Early or late loss of baby teeth
- A hard time chewing or biting food
- Finger or thumb sucking
- Crowded, misplaced, or blocked teeth
- Jaws and teeth that are not proportionate to the rest of the face
- Crowded front teeth around age seven or eight