Does Your Child Need an Orthodontic Evaluation?

We’re often asked about the ideal time for a younger child to be evaluated for orthodontic treatment. As every child is different, a good milestone is around age seven, when the jaw is developed enough, and there are enough permanent teeth to see if there are any existing issues… or any that are developing and may become a problem in the near future.

At Greater Houston Orthodontics we discuss “early evaluation” often because there are many benefits to undergoing orthodontic treatment as a younger child, including shorter treatment time, fewer impacted permanent teeth and oftentimes, even a lower chance of having to remove teeth to achieve proper alignment and bite. Let me explain: when we see children early enough, we can minimize crowding to make room for teeth that haven’t yet erupted, helping to guide jaw growth and working to correct the results of bad habits (like thumb sucking, for example) before they cause more significant orthodontic issues.

So what’s a parent to do? Keep in mind the following signs, which will help you to identify when it’s the right time for a visit to the orthodontist:

  • The teeth:
    • Teeth that look crowded
    • Protruding teeth (“buck teeth”)
    • Teeth that meet abnormally… or don’t meet at all
  • The jaw:
    • Difficulty chewing or biting into food
    • Jaw that seems to be disproportionate to your child’s face
    • Jaw makes a popping sound when opening 
  • Behaviors:
    • Mouth breathing
    • Thumb or other finger sucking
    • Grinding and/or clenching the teeth

Keep in mind that these signs do not guarantee that your child needs treatment, but they may indicate that an orthodontic evaluation is a prudent next step.

Do some of these signs look familiar to you?

Dr. Amir Davoody and Dr. Rana Mehr lead a friendly, dedicated team that works together to create a positive experience for young patients and their families that’s fun, light hearted, warm and inviting. The doctors and team use the most advanced treatments available today, including Invisalign, Invisalign Teen and Incognito™ invisible braces.

With two convenient locations in Bellaire and Memorial, we are ready to help you start smiling. Please contact our West University or our Memorial office to schedule a complimentary consultation or click below: