Early Childhood Orthodontics

At Pure Orthodontics, our orthodontic specialist, Dr Tracey Shell, welcomes children of all ages. The Australian Society of Orthodontists recommends a child have their first assessment at around 7 years of age.

Does My Child Need Orthodontics?

An early assessment is necessary to determine if your child would benefit from orthodontic treatment while they are young. There are 3 main reasons why we may recommend early treatment for your child:

  • To prevent irreversible wear and damage to the teeth and gums
  • To improve their jawbone relationships so that their teeth and jaws have the best chance of developing normally
  • To prevent their orthodontic problem from becoming worse

Between the ages of 7-10 is generally the ideal time for early interceptive treatment to correct jaws that are mismatched in size as young, growing jaws can be manipulated, while those in non-growing individuals cannot.

With appropriate early interceptive treatment, we can:

  • Reduce the risk of dental trauma if teeth protrude.
  • Preserve natural spaces where baby teeth have been lost early.
  • Correct a detrimental habit such as thumb-sucking or finger chewing.
  • Avoid the need for adult tooth extractions and jaw surgery in some cases.
  • Simplify and shorten future orthodontic treatment. 

Many children who have had early treatment will go on to have a second phase of orthodontic treatment once all the adult teeth have erupted.

Once your child has been examined, Dr Shell will let you know if any early intervention is required. If your child is not ready to begin treatment, we will place them in our “Continuing Care Programme”. These patients will see Dr Shell for complimentary growth and dental development checks as needed. These checks allow her to monitor the growth of your child closely, so that she can treat them at the ideal time.
 
There are, of course, many 7-10 year old children that don’t need early orthodontic intervention.  In many cases, it is simpler and just as effective to wait until further dental development occurs and address their orthodontic issues in a single phase of treatment.

To learn more about the orthodontic appliances we offer, please visit our early treatment page.

Does Your Child Need an Orthodontic Evaluation?

We invite you to call our Moonee Ponds orthodontic clinic to arrange a booking with Dr Tracey Shell. Our friendly team awaits to help you and your little one get started toward a healthy, beautiful smile.