Parents may incorrectly assume they must wait until a child has all of his or her permanent teeth. However, the American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) recommends that every child get check-up with an orthodontist no later than age 7.
“I can’t emphasize how important it is that parents understand the value of an orthodontic check- up,” says Dr. Maz Moshiri. “By age 7, enough permanent teeth have arrived for an orthodontist to evaluate relationships developing between teeth, jaw and bite. Orthodontists can determine what, if anything is awry.
“A visit to the orthodontist can ease a parent’s mind, too,” notes Dr. Maz Moshiri. “Our recommendation may simply be ‘let’s wait and see’ while the face and jaws continue to grow.”
Some of the more readily apparent conditions that indicate the need for an examination include:
Early or late loss of baby teeth
Difficulty in chewing or biting
Crowding, misplaced or blocked-out teeth
Jaws that shift or make sounds
Biting the cheek or the roof of the mouth
Teeth that meet abnormally, or don’t meet at all
Jaws that are too far forward or back
Grinding or clenching of the teeth…