The Right Age

The Right Age for Braces

Dr. Heinrichs and the Canadian and American Association of Orthodontists recommend that every child see an orthodontist as early as age seven and even earlier if a parent or the family dentist discovers a problem. Since no two patients are alike, there is not a specific age that is best to begin treatment. Interceptive treatment is not always necessary, but it will be recommended when it can benefit your child. Early diagnosis and treatment by a specialist can correct small problems before they become bigger problems. Our goal is to reduce or eliminate treatment time in full braces and to provide the best, most stable results possible.

Early Intervention

Early intervention can make a dramatic impact on establishing the proper occlusal foundation. The Canadian and American Association of Orthodontists recommends that all children have a check-up with an orthodontist by the time they reach age 7, for early detection of any potential problems. By the age of 7, some of the permanent teeth have erupted, so that most children have a mix of adult and baby teeth. At this stage of mixed dentition, Dr. Heinrichs can spot potential orthodontic problems related to jaw growth and eruption of adult teeth. Some growth-related orthodontic problems are easier to correct when they are identified early…while the facial bones are still growing.

Adolescent Treatment

Adolescence is often the best time to have orthodontic treatment. Usually, all or most permanent teeth are erupted and patients are at one of their most active phases of growth. This is a great time to correct most problems, as the jaws are actively growing and their growth can be most easily modified during this time.

Adult Treatment

There is no age limit for braces. Anyone at any age should be able to have a perfect smile. As adult patients become more aware of the benefits of modern orthodontic therapy, many realize that improving the health of their mouths and the attractiveness of their smile and facial appearance can result in changes for the better in their personal, social and professional lives. At Heinrichs Orthodontics, we offer innovative and esthetic options in braces for adults, including Invisalign, lingual braces and ceramic brackets. Not everyone is a good candidate for Invisalign, and Dr. Heinrichs will discuss your treatment options at your initial exam. However, we believe that healthy teeth can be moved at any age, and it is never too late to improve your smile.

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