Reasons to Visit an Orthodontist by the Age of 7

January 11, 2019

By age seven, most children are in second grade, can read independently, tell time, and may even have started a sport or hobby. By age seven, your child should also have seen an orthodontist for the first time. There are some very good reasons this is the ideal age for their first visit.

By the age of three, most children will have formed a full set of baby teeth, which contains 20 in all. Around age five or six, these teeth begin falling out to make way for a full set of 32 adult teeth. Teeth continue being replaced until around age 12 or 13 when their permanent sets are grown in.

By age seven, there are enough indications for an orthodontist to tell whether a first phase of treatment is needed, if it will be needed in the future, or if your child’s teeth are coming in properly. Early identification and treatment can help prevent a host of issues from developing.

Crooked Teeth
Crooked teeth are the number one reason for people of any age to get braces. During childhood, teeth are easily moved and straightened. Maple Orthodontics will provide a complimentary examination of your child’s teeth to determine the severity of any crooked teeth and determine when is the best time for treatment for your child.

Overlapping/Crowded Teeth
If adult teeth grow in and are too crowded or even overlapping, this can lead to further issues. Overcrowded teeth will be difficult to brush and floss between, leaving possibility of gum disease and decay, even during childhood. Maple Orthodontics (New Albany) can help identify the ideal spacing for your child’s teeth and create a plan to help them grow in properly.

Malocclusion (“bad bite”)
As adult teeth begin appearing, it will become apparent whether your child has an overbite or underbite. This happens when there is a size difference between the upper and lower sets of teeth. It is critical that any issues with the jaw be addressed as early as possible. Adult jaws are firmly set and your options for a solution may be limited to surgical intervention. You can help correct any malocclusion or “bad bite” issues while the jaw is still mobile, avoiding more extreme solutions in the future.

Missing or Extra Teeth
Seeing an orthodontist by the age of seven can help identify whether your child will have any extra or missing adult teeth. It’s important to have this determined ahead of time so a plan can be put into place to remove or replace any abnormalities.

Correct Harmful Habits

An orthodontist can also help identify harmful habits in young children that may lead to future tooth and jaw issues. Thumb or finger sucking can lead to misalignment of the teeth as they grow in. Abnormal chewing or swallowing can also be identified and corrected for better tooth health.

The American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) recommends that children see an orthodontist no later than age 7. As growth and changes occur, your child will need proper oral care to help avoid issues later in life. That’s why we created the complimentary Maple Orthodontics Observation Club, a way to monitor your child’s teeth before they need braces.  Don’t delay, call (614) 775-1000 or fill out our contact form for an appointment today.


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