Quiz Time…By What Age Should Your Child Be Evaluated For Braces?

School will soon be out for the summer and I’m sure your family has lots on its summertime to-do list, namely relaxing by the pool or at the beach or anywhere you can soak up the nice sunny weather.  I do have another place in mind that you may want to consider visiting this summer with your kids…your dentist office!

Now visiting the dentist office may not be as high up on your fun meter as a trip to the beach, but trust me, a visit to the dentist is a great use of any extra time you may find on your hands during summer break from school.  During the school year it is sometimes difficult to find time for routine visits to the pediatrician, eye doctor, dentist, etc.  Take advantage of the family’s more relaxed schedule and call your dentist today.

Has it been longer than six months since your family’s last visit to the dentist?  Remember, it is recommended that we visit the dentist at least every six months for a cleaning and checkup.  Another important reason to take your kids to the dentist is to have them evaluated for braces.  Did you know by what age your child should be evaluated for braces?  The American Association of Orthodontics (AAO) recommends that “all children get a check-up with an orthodontist no later than age seven.”

This may surprise you considering that a seven-year-old may still have baby teeth and many parents assume orthodontic treatment will wait until their child has all permanent adult teeth.  The AAO explains on their website (www.braces.org) that “By age 7, enough permanent teeth have arrived for orthodontists to evaluate how the teeth and jaws meet, and to identify current or developing problems.”  After this evaluation, the orthodontist and parents will discuss the best time to begin treatment if treatment is deemed necessary.

So how does a parent select an orthodontist for their child?  Your dentist is the best way to get a referral to a reputable orthodontist they would trust to treat your child.  At your child’s next cleaning and checkup, be sure to ask your dentist if he or she feels braces would benefit your child.  Your dentist will be happy to give their opinion and also recommend an orthodontist for you to visit for an evaluation.

Some dental offices make it all the more convenient for their patients by working with an orthodontist right on location so you don’t have to travel to different offices for treatment.  Bright Side Dental is one example of a dental practice that has orthodontists on staff to meet your family’s needs.  You can also visit www.braces.org to find an orthodontist in your area.

If you have children age seven or older, it’s time to find out if braces are in their future.  Be sure to squeeze in a visit to your dentist on one of those lazy summer days filled with barbecuing and runs through the sprinkler this summer.  Have a safe and fun summer break!

Bright Side Dental is a dental group with locations in Sterling Heights, St. Clair Shores, Livonia, Canton, and Royal Oak, Michigan.  Visit www.BrightSideDental.com.

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