For Parents of Young Patients

At what age should my child see an Orthodontist?

An early assessment is important so you can take preemptive action, and avoid more difficulties later in life. The American Assosiation of Orthodontists recommends that every child be evaluated by age 7. By then, jaws have grown and the presence of some permanent teeth makes it possible to detect existing or future problems- or verify that all seems normal. It's also a good time to assess the impact of unusual oral habits (such as thumb sucking).Moreover, an early assessment gives parents an oportunity to prepare for future treatment.

What's the best age to start treatment?

Although treatment can help people at almost any age, the best time for children to begin depends on the problem and the time of diagnosis. Sometimes, very early intervention can avoid more costly, complex and time-consuming procedures in adolescence.

What are the early symptoms of Orthodontic problems?

It's wise to seek advice from an orthodontist if your child displays these (or other noticeable) problems at any age.

  • Crooked teeth
  • Overlapping teeth
  • Gaps between teeth
  • Protruding top teeth
  • Protruding bottom teeth
  • When chewing, jaw moves off-center
  • When biting, upper teeth cover more than 50% of bottom teeth

How can I help my child prepare for braces?

Because children often fear that braces will cause physical pain or personal embarrassment, it's important to include them in the diagnosis and treatment planning process. Encourage them to ask questions of you and Dr. Hoff. Nothing should be a mystery. Our entire staff is comfortable talking with children and their families about their questions and concerns before, during and after treatment.

How can I support my child during treatment?

For best results, focus on the lifetime benefits of an improved smile, and the importance of your child's role in achieving success. Treatment isn't something that happens to our patients- rather, it's a process in which they must participate to see the best results. Check-in with children regularly to be sure they understand Dr. Hoff's instructions and they're properly caring for their appliances.

Can my child participate in sports or play musical instruments?

Absolutely. If your child is involved in contact sports, Dr. Hoff can recommend a protective mouthgaurd. For children who play wind or brass instruments such as the trumpet, braces clearly pose a challenge. However, with patience and persistence, most children adapt successfully.


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