Why Your Child Needs to See An Orthodontist by Age 7

Our orthodontist, Dr. Backinger, tells parents in Jackson and Charlotte to bring their little ones in by age 7. Why? The American Association of Orthodontists says kids should have their first check-up with an orthodontist by the time they’re 7 years old. This early visit is important because it helps catch tooth or jaw problems before they get out of control. At Summit Orthodontics, we work to see that your kids get the best start for a great smile. Here’s why 7 is so special for your kids’ orthodontic health. 

Why Bother With Early Evals?

Why is seeing an orthodontist by age 7 so important? Your child’s mouth is a mix of baby and permanent teeth at this age. Dr. Backinger uses this time to spot any issues that could turn into bigger problems later. While the doctor will check for crooked or misaligned teeth, she will also inspect how your child’s jaw is growing and how their teeth are coming in.

Catching these things early can mean simpler treatments and can sometimes even avoid the need for braces or aligners later on. Plus, some problems are honestly easier to fix while your child is still growing. That’s why this early check-up is a big deal.

Benefits of Early Orthodontic Intervention

Getting a head start on orthodontic care at age 7 sets the stage for decades of dazzling smiles. Early intervention from our Summit Orthodontics team can lead to better outcomes and, in some cases, less intrusive treatments down the line. Here are a few key benefits of starting orthodontic care by age 7.

Proactive vs. Reactive Care

Starting orthodontic evaluations early means we can be proactive rather than reactive. This approach allows Dr. Backinger to identify potential orthodontic problems before they develop further. Nip it in the bud early, you might say. Early detection can lead to interventions that guide the growth of the jaw and the correct spacing of your child’s teeth.

Guiding Jaw and Tooth Development

One of the biggest advantages of early orthodontic visits is the opportunity to oversee your child’s developing facial structure. Most people think of orthodontists like Dr. Backinger in terms of teeth. And our practice cares about your child’s teeth. But their teeth don’t exist by themselves. Muscles, bones, skin, and other tissues are also in the mix. Dr. Backinger has to consider how these other structures interact with your child’s bite. 

Positive Impact on Self-Esteem

A confident smile can have a big effect on your child’s self-esteem. Early orthodontic care can correct bite issues or misaligned teeth. A “bad bite” might cause self-consciousness as your child grows. By addressing these concerns early, Dr. Backinger and our team at Summit Orthodontics help heighten your child’s confidence. A healthy, straight smile can make all the difference in how a child sees themselves and interacts with the world around them.

Why Your Child Needs to See An Orthodontist by Age 7

Common Issues During Early Visits

An early visit to Summit Orthodontics in Jackson or Charlotte isn’t a mere routine check-up. We represent a crucial step in finding common orthodontic issues that can be easier to address at a young age. Here’s a closer look at some of the issues that can be spotted during these initial evaluations.

Bad Bites

Bad bites (you might hear the word “malocclusion” around our offices), like overbites, underbites, and crossbites, are among the most common issues we find during early orthodontic visits. These conditions involve the misalignment of the upper and lower jaws, which can affect chewing, speaking, and even the shape of your child’s face as they grow. 

Crowding and Spacing

Crowding occurs when there isn’t enough room in the mouth for all permanent teeth to come in properly, leading to overlapping or crooked teeth. Conversely, excessive spacing can leave gaps between your child’s teeth. Both conditions can impact their oral hygiene and their smile’s aesthetic appearance. 

Jaw Growth Concerns

Monitoring jaw growth is essential to an early orthodontic evaluation at age 7. Abnormal growth patterns can lead to bite problems (remember “malocclusions?”), misaligned teeth, and aesthetic concerns. By assessing your child’s jaw growth early, Dr. Backinger can determine if there are any deviations from normal patterns. 

What to Expect During Your Child’s First Visit

During your child’s first visit to Summit Orthodontics, Dr. Backinger and our team make sure the experience is as welcoming and stress-free as possible. This initial appointment entails getting to know your child and their dental history. We will thoroughly examine their teeth, jaw, and bites. Dr. Backinger assesses your child’s orthodontic needs using gentle techniques and the latest technology. We will also discuss potential treatment options. There’s also plenty of time for you or your child to ask questions and express concerns. It’s an opportunity for Dr. Backinger to provide personalized advice on how to best care for your child’s smile. 

A quick note about our philosophy on early intervention. Dr. Backinger prefers a conservative approach for kids. She will try to postpone treatment as long as possible. We don’t believe in intervening if it isn’t needed. But, suppose the doctor notices improper growth in the bones around your child’s jaw. Or, she might see that their teeth are growing in a way that’s painful or dangerous, she will definitely recommend a short phase of treatment. 

Why Your Child Needs to See An Orthodontist by Age 7

Let’s Summit Your Child’s Orthodontic Health

Ready to take the first step toward the summit of your child’s orthodontic health? Schedule your free consultation with Dr. Jessica Backinger at Summit Orthodontics today. Our practice has two locations: Jackson and Charlotte. We provide thorough, compassionate care for you and your little ones. Whether you’re curious about your child’s dental development or it’s time for that recommended first check-up by age 7, Dr. Backinger and our team are here to guide you through every step of the process. Don’t wait to give your child the gift of a healthy, beautiful smile. Visit us here to schedule your free consultation and start your child on optimal oral health.