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Early Treatment

The American Association of Orthodontists recommends kids have their first orthodontic evaluation no later than age 7. Our team makes these visits fun for kids and stress-free for parents.

Experts in Growing Smiles

Age 7 might sound pretty young for a child’s first orthodontist visit. But it’s important to evaluate kids’ jaw growth and the relationship of the primary and permanent teeth before peak growth is complete. While most kids won’t need treatment right away, for those with certain skeletal and dental issues, early orthodontic treatment can have major lifelong benefits.

Early Orthodontic Treatment

How Does Early Orthodontic Treatment Work?

As a board-certified orthodontist and mom, Dr. Cara Piskai treats kids conservatively and only recommends early intervention, also called phase 1 treatment, when there is a clear health benefit. The majority of kids will come in for their age 7 visit and then simply begin an observational period. Dr. Piskai will keep an eye on their development during yearly check-ups (these visits are complimentary!), so she can pinpoint the best time for them to start treatment.

If Dr. Piskai does identify certain red flags, however, she may recommend early treatment when your child is between the ages of 7 and 10, before all of their permanent teeth have erupted. During phase 1 treatment, Dr. Piskai will use an orthodontic appliance, most commonly a rapid palatal expander (RPE), to guide jaw growth. Treatment is generally finished in 12 months or less and narrowly focused on achieving a specific goal.

The Benefits of Early Orthodontic Treatment

When phase 1 orthodontic treatment is necessary, it can:
  • Guide jaw growth
  • Help kids avoid the need for corrective jaw surgery or extractions
  • Create the necessary space for the permanent teeth to erupt properly
  • Eliminate harmful oral habits, such as thumb sucking and tongue thrust
  • Fix a traumatic bite
  • Make later treatment faster and more affordable
  • Help with chewing, biting, and speaking
  • Address airway issues like sleep-disordered breathing
  • Create facial symmetry
  • Boost kids’ confidence and self-esteem!

We Make This Stuff Fun

Whether your child needs early intervention, or they visit us for yearly growth and development check-ups, we’ll make them feel comfortable and special. Our bright, modern practice is filled with smiles, laughter, and fun. And, for parents, our digital processes and high quality treatments ensure orthodontic care works for your busy lifestyle. Schedule a complimentary consultation to put your child on the path to their healthiest smile.

Vorhees orthodontist for kids