Did your dentist refer your child to an orthodontist, and you’re concerned they’re too young? Are you unhappy with your smile but feel like you’ve missed the orthodontic treatment window? Champlain Orthodontics wants to help you answer the question, “When’s the best age to get braces?”
Phase 1 Treatment
Childhood is often referred to as the ‘Foundation Stage’ in the orthodontic journey because this is when the groundwork is laid for a healthy and well-aligned smile in the future. In fact, the American Association of Orthodontists recommends that children have their first orthodontic evaluation no later than seven. While this may seem early, these evaluations can be crucial in identifying and addressing potential orthodontic issues before they become more complex.
At Champlain Orthodontics, we strongly advocate for early evaluations. They allow us to monitor your child’s dental development and intervene if necessary. Early intervention can often prevent more serious problems from developing and may make treatment at a later age shorter and less complicated.
One of the strategies we employ for early intervention is Two-Phase Treatment. This treatment approach works with your child’s growth stages to achieve optimal orthodontic results. The first phase aims to guide the growth of the jaw, helping to accommodate all permanent teeth and improving the way the upper and lower jaws fit together. Children with less severe issues will not need phase one treatment and can skip straight to phase two in a few years. The second stage is when we use a full set of braces or clear aligners to straighten your child’s teeth, but we’ll get to that in a moment.
Remember, early evaluation doesn’t necessarily mean early treatment, but it does mean your child will get the care they need at the right time.
Phase Two Treatment
Phase one occurs when your child is younger and has primarily baby teeth. Phase two occurs in the teen years when your child has most or all adult teeth. When you think of teenagers and braces, you’re thinking of phase two!
Adolescence is the period when most individuals undergo orthodontic treatment. Because the timing aligns with the eruption of all permanent teeth and the rapid growth of the jaw, it is an ideal time to correct any malocclusions or alignment issues.
Beyond the practical aspect, there are other benefits too. Addressing orthodontic issues during these formative years can set the stage for a lifetime of confident smiles. Getting braces becomes a shared experience for many teens, making the journey more enjoyable and less daunting.
Treatment For Adults
Orthodontic treatment is not just for children and teenagers — it’s never too late to improve your smile. More adults than ever are seeking orthodontic treatment to correct long-standing dental issues or to enhance their smile’s appearance. This stage in the orthodontic journey can be seen as the ‘Opportunity Stage,’ a time when individuals have the chance to achieve the smile they’ve always desired.
At Champlain Orthodontics, we understand that adults have unique concerns when it comes to orthodontic treatment. These may include the length of treatment, the cost, and the aesthetic impact of braces. That’s why we offer an affordable range of treatment options designed to meet the specific needs of our adult patients efficiently and discreetly.
So, which age is best?
Actually, all of them! Orthodontic treatment is a highly personalized journey; no set age range is best. While age plays a role in determining the ideal time to start treatment, several other factors come into play. Understanding these can help you make informed decisions about your and your family’s orthodontic care.
- Dental Development: Those with severe cases might benefit from childhood intervention, whereas others would better benefit from waiting a few years.
- Dental Health: Your dental issues, such as cavities, gum disease, or tooth extractions, can play a role in determining the right time for orthodontic treatment. A healthy foundation is crucial for successful outcomes.
- Psychological Readiness: The patient’s emotional readiness for orthodontic treatment is also important. They should understand the importance of the treatment and be prepared for the commitment it requires. This is especially important for teens and adults. Compliance is crucial, or else treatment will be slow or ineffective.
- Financial Considerations: Champlain Orthodontics takes pride in offering the communities of Saint Albans and Williston affordable care, but we also understand that orthodontic treatment is an investment. The financial readiness of the patient or their family can also be a factor in determining the timing of treatment. If you have questions about cost or insurance, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us.
- Family History: Genetics can influence dental development. If you experienced orthodontic concerns at a young age, consider early evaluations for your children to prepare for similar issues.
Begin Treatment With Champlain Orthodontics!
The safest, most accurate way to determine if you or your child requires orthodontic treatment is to see us at Champlain Orthodontics! We offer commitment-free, complimentary consultations so that you can receive professional guidance without feeling pressured to begin treatment immediately. After creating your personalized treatment plan, Dr. Eaton and Dr. Ryan will take all the time necessary to answer all your questions.
We hope to help you smile soon!