Dr. Kennemer recommends that a child receive his or her first orthodontic examination no later than age 7. Early diagnosis and treatment can correct small problems before they become big problems. Typical signs of the need for an orthodontic exam may include, but are not limited to the early or late loss of teeth, difficulty in chewing, mouth-breathing, finger sucking, crowded teeth, jaw dysfunction, a sunken or protruding jaw or misaligned teeth. Signs of potential orthodontic problems may not be obvious. Our initial exams are at no charge and are the most sensible means of ensuring proper oral health.
Interceptive care refers to orthodontic treatment at an age before all of the permanent teeth have erupted. This typically occurs between the ages of 7 and 9. We can often correct occlusal problems such as crossbites or severe skeletal structural issues, as well as incisor alignment, when they are causing emotional distress at this age. Early treatment can make subsequent comprehensive treatment more productive and ensure better results.
We treat to balance, aesthetics and function, and if those goals are best achieved with extractions, we will recommend extractions.
Adolescents make up the majority of our patients. This is often times the most ideal time to align the teeth and correct the bite. Problems such as crowding, overbites and underbites are conditions that should be corrected. We feel that treating patients during adolescent growth provides us the greatest opportunity to achieve the best result. Some severe problems require a combination of orthodontic and surgical treatment.
More adults are seeking orthodontic treatment than ever before. Many adults were unable to get braces during childhood and as a result have simply lived with misaligned teeth or a dysfunctional bite. Orthodontic treatment can improve the appearance of the smile and many times can improve the health of the teeth and gums.
Sometimes adult orthodontic treatment can be complex and involve other specialists, but the result can be very rewarding. Most adult patients are very motivated and therefore increase their chances of getting the best result. Today’s braces are less noticeable than in the past and are more efficient. It’s never too late to consider orthodontics.