What’s the Right Age for Orthodontic Treatment?
Orthodontic treatment is appropriate for children and adults. Many progressive treatments are now available for patients six to eleven years old that provide significant benefits, especially in jaw irregularities. These treatments may also prevent certain conditions from worsening. Treating children during their growth stages allows orthodontists to achieve results that may not be possible when face and jaw bones have fully developed. This early treatment can simplify or eliminate additional treatment for the child. Braces are typically applied to teeth after all permanent teeth are in place, usually at ages 12 or 13. In the past, orthodontic treatment was often postponed until the adolescent years, when all the permanent teeth came in. We now know that many orthodontic problems can be treated earlier and much easier by working with the growth that takes place in younger children.
We follow the American Association of Orthodontists’ recommendation that every child have an orthodontic evaluation by age 7, or earlier if a problem is detected. Although treatment may not begin at this young age, an early examination allows us to monitor your child's dental development to determine the best time to start. Early detection can significantly reduce the need for removal of permanent teeth. And because younger children are more enthusiastic and cooperative, total treatment time is often reduced. In many cases, positive orthodontic results can be achieved which would not otherwise be possible once the face and jaws have finished growing.
Adults are also prime candidates for treatment. They account for nearly 25% of all orthodontic patients.
How Does Treatment Work?
Treatment plans are customized according to each patient's needs and are based on a Complete diagnosis of each case. Orthodontic diagnosis involves x-rays, dental impressions, and photographs, which enable us to make informative decisions about what type of appliances will deliver the best results. Treatment typically lasts one to three years, depending on age, the severity of the orthodontic problem and the partnership agreement between the patient and doctor. Orthodontic treatment costs vary, depending on the treatment plan and insurance coverage. Many insurance plans cover a percentage of the fees.
How Much Does Orthodontics Cost?
Charges for treatment are determined and explained at your consultation appointment. They are based on the severity and complexity of the problem. Please do not hesitate to discuss our fees if you have any questions. Most patients pay for orthodontics over the time of treatment, financed monthly without interest. Our fee covers all procedures completed in our office.