When Should My Child See an Orthodontist?

Parents across Northern Colorado, including Loveland, Fort Collins, and Windsor, often ask us when their children should see an orthodontist. Goings Orthodontics has a few different orthodontics options just for kids. With options like metal braces, clear braces, and Invisalign, your kids’ new smiles will make them look (and feel) great! At Goings Orthodontics, under the expert care of Dr. Goings, our team can help you through this important part of your child’s dental health journey. 

The Best Age for an Orthodontic Visit

When it comes to kids’ orthodontic treatment, timing can make all the difference. The American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) advises that parents take their kids to an orthodontic evaluation by age 7. Why this specific age? By age 7, most children have a mix of baby and adult teeth. 7 is a great time for orthodontists like Dr. Goings to detect early signs of jaw issues or misalignments. Catching these little problems early prevents them from getting worse.

Your child’s early evaluation doesn’t necessarily mean they will start treatment immediately. Instead, it provides a proactive approach to your child’s oral health. Early treatment identifies potential problems with your child’s teeth before they become more severe. Early detection helps our team develop treatments that address the root of your child’s problem. Furthermore, we can reduce your child’s need for more extensive orthodontic work in the future.

At Goings Orthodontics, we believe in the power of early intervention. By assessing your child’s dental development at age 7, we can guide their growth and development in a way that best supports them and their smile. So, if you’re contemplating a first visit, remember: your first consultation is free!

Recognizing the Signs

Knowing when your child might need orthodontic attention can be as simple as observing their everyday habits. Key indicators include:

  • Difficulty eating, chewing, biting, or swallowing.
  • Mouth breathing.
  • Sucking their thumb after age five.

Look at your child’s teeth. Do you notice crowded, misplaced, or particularly gapped teeth?

It could be time for an evaluation! Additionally, jaws that seem to shift, make sounds, protrude, or recede may suggest underlying orthodontic issues with your child’s bone structure.

Early observation by parents plays a pivotal role in identifying these signs. At Goings Orthodontics, we encourage parents to monitor their child’s oral development proactively. Recognizing these signs early and consulting with Dr. Goings can lead to timely orthodontic intervention. 

When Should My Child See an Orthodontist?

The Risks of Delaying Orthodontic Care

Delaying orthodontic evaluation and caring for your child can cause more than aesthetic problems. It can have significant implications for their oral health and overall well-being. Without timely intervention, minor issues can evolve into more difficult issues. As we mentioned earlier, stopping what’s causing your child’s toothache today might mean they don’t need braces later on.

Misaligned teeth or malocclusion (think “bad bite”) can lead to difficulties in chewing, speaking, and maintaining proper orthodontic hygiene. Issues like these can lead to an increased risk of tooth decay, gum disease, and even jaw pain. Additionally, untreated orthodontic issues can impact your child’s self-esteem and social interactions, affecting their quality of life.

At Goings Orthodontics, our team emphasizes the importance of early orthodontic assessments to identify and address potential issues before they become serious. As a parent, you can help your child enjoy a stupendous smile and a healthy future by choosing to act early.

Treatment Options We Offer

At Goings Orthodontics, we understand your child’s orthodontic needs. That’s why we offer several different treatment options. Each option has the same goal in mind, but they all work a little differently.

Palatal Expanders: Creating Space for a Healthy Smile

When your child’s upper arch is too narrow, teeth have a challenging time erupting into the correct place. Expanders become a crucial part of developing space during this time. If needed, the expander is usually recommended in children ages 7-12 because, at this age, the children are still growing. The jaw and facial development can easily be manipulated when growth is still occurring. The expander gradually widens the upper jaw to allow the permanent teeth to have space to erupt. This not only aids in proper growth and alignment of permanent teeth but also helps prevent more complex orthodontic issues in the future.

Traditional Metal Braces: A Time-Tested Solution

Traditional metal braces remain among Fort Collins and Windsor’s most commonly chosen treatments. Renowned for their robustness in correcting a wide array of dental misalignments, today’s metal braces have evolved. We design your child’s braces to be more comfortable and visually appealing. Your child deserves a painless treatment plan that will get them the smile they deserve.

Invisalign: The Clear Path to a Straight Smile

Invisalign gives your kids a series of clear, removable aligners. They’re perfect for kids who are hesitant about the visual impact of traditional braces. Each set of aligners is custom-made to shift teeth into place. Invisalign moves teeth while also allowing your child the ability to brush and floss easily. The aligners are removed to eat, drink, and brush/floss. Your child will wear each aligner for about one week. You will gradually notice teeth moving as treatment progresses.  Another benefit is that there are no broken brackets or pokey wires. Ultimately, Invisalign is a fantastic choice for early treatment.


Orthodontics For Kids At Goings Orthodontics:

Our office remains committed to providing comprehensive, compassionate care customized to the particular needs of each young patient. By recognizing the signs early and exploring suitable treatment options, we can work together to ensure your child’s smile is beautiful and healthy. Let Dr. Goings and our dedicated team at Goings Orthodontics help your child embark on the journey to a lifetime of confident smiles. Go here to schedule a free consultation at either our Fort Collins or Windsor offices.