Updated: Nov 3, 2020
Let me answer a popular question we are frequently asked at Feinberg Orthodontics by our parents in the Shelton, Stratford, Trumbull, Monroe area when considering orthodontics for their children. “When is the best time to have my child seen by an orthodontist?
Orthodontics is the specialty of dentistry dedicated to realigning your teeth into a beautiful smile, aka… moving your teeth and even jaw from a less favorable position to the most favorable position possible. Orthodontic treatment is beneficial at any point in someone’s life but there are more advantageous times than others when it comes to shifting teeth. The juvenile and adolescent growth spurts(age 8-12) can be a very significant and beneficial time to provide orthodontic intervention.
Treatment is much easier if evaluated and started before problems worsen and vital growth spurts are lost.
As an example, consider a sculptor shaping a creation out of clay. It’s a lot easier to create this work of art out of an easily manipulated material like clay than it would be to take hammer and chisel to a block of wood or stone. So this is the case with younger patients, and oftentimes growth can be tapped into. This affords the opportunity to shape growth in a more favorable direction. At this earlier stage, prior to maturity, the orthodontist will have an opportunity to guide natural jaw growth into a perfect smile or make room for the development of the adult teeth.
The American Association of Orthodontists recommends that an orthodontist examine your child by no later than the age of 7 to determine if early orthodontic treatment is needed.
An orthodontic specialist receives an additional degree beyond the general dental degree. In fact, an orthodontic specialist requires an additional 2-3 years to become an expert in the study of tooth movement and jaw growth. It’s critically important to have a licensed orthodontist analyze the “forecasting clues” when evaluating a patient of any age.
Dr. Mark Feinberg has even gone a step beyond and achieved board certification by the American Board of Orthodontics. He is one of the very few orthodontists in the country that have achieved this super specialist status(only 30% of orthodontists in the country are board certified).
It is not necessary to be referred by your general dentist for a complimentary orthodontic evaluation at Feinberg Orthodontics. Be proactive and contact our Shelton, CT office to schedule a complimentary smile exam.
If your child is not a candidate for early treatment, we will be happy to continue to monitor your child’s dental and jaw growth development in our complimentary supervisory program to assess the ideal time to intervene and begin treatment.