Early Treatment

When is the best time to begin orthodontics?

Though an orthodontist can enhance a smile at any age, there is an optimal time to begin treatment for each individual.  Beginning treatment at this time ensures the greatest result and the least amount of time and expense. The Canadian Association of Orthodontists recommends that the initial orthodontic evaluation could occur by age 7 or 8 for some patients, or as late as 11 or 12 years of age for other patients.  At this early age, orthodontic treatment may not be necessary, but vigilant examination can help us anticipate the most advantageous time to begin treatment.

What are the benefits of early orthodontic evaluation?

Early evaluation provides both timely detection of problems and greater opportunity for more effective treatment. Prudent intervention guides growth and development, deminishing the severity of later problems. When orthodontic intervention is not necessary, an orthodontist can carefully monitor growth and development and begin treatment when it is ideal.

Why is it good to have an exam prior to all baby teeth having fallen out?

The bite at the back can be evaluated prior to all baby teeth having been lost. During this time, an orthodontist can evaluate front-to-back and side-to-side tooth relationships. For example, the presence of erupting incisors can indicate possible overbite (deep bite), open bite, cross bites, or crowding. Timely screening increases the chances for an incredible smile.

What are the advantages of interceptive (early) treatment?

Some of the most direct results of interceptive treatment are:

  • correcting anterior underbites, or posterior crossbites (to help get facial skeletal growth back on track)
  • helping to correct habits such as thumb sucking habits (ie:at age 6 or 7 years of age)
  • Creating facial symmetry through influencing jaw growth
  • Reducing the risk of trauma to protruding front teeth
  • Preserving (maintaining) space for unerupted teeth
  • Reducing treatment time  and giving better overall options of the full conventional orthodontic treatment later

Are you a candidate for orthodontic treatment?

Orthodontics is not merely for improving the aesthetics of the smile; orthodontic treatment improves bad bites (malocclusions). Malocclusions occur as a result of tooth or jaw misalignment. Malocclusions affect the way you smile, chew, clean your teeth or feel about your smile.

Why should malocclusions be treated?

According to studies by the American and Canadian Association of Orthodontists, untreated malocclusions can result in a variety of problems:

  • Crowded teeth are more difficult to properly brush and floss, which may contribute to tooth decay and/or gum disease.
  • Protruding teeth are more susceptible to accidental chipping.
  • Crossbites can result in unfavorable facial skeletal growth, and uneven and accelerated tooth wear.
  • Openbites can result in tongue-thrusting habits and speech and chewing impediments.

Ultimately, orthodontics does more than make a pretty smile – it creates a healthier more confident you.