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1Q3. When should my child receive orthodontic treatment?

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When should my child receive orthodontic treatment?

The answer depends on the type of orthodontic problem.


If a five year old child bite with all upper front teeth behind the lower front teeth, the child may need immediate orthodontic-orthopedic treatment.

If a child has upper back teeth inside of lower back teeth on one side, he or she should be treated either after eruption of upper 1st molar (around age 7-8) or after the eruption of all adult dentition (around age 10-13).

In general, orthodontic treatment may be initiated at three different period based on dental and skeletal problem involved.  The approximate chronological age for the initiation of treatment are age 5-6, age 7-8, or age 10-14. The indication to start treatment at each period are listed below:

Age 5-6:     When a child bite down with all upper front teeth behind lower front teeth.

Age 7-8:     When a child bite down

- upper front teeth more than 5mm in front of lower front teeth.

- upper back teeth inside of the lower back teeth.


Excessive crowding leading to premature loss of baby teeth  preventing eruption of adult teeth.

Child being teased leading to poor social development.

Premature loss of baby teeth with loss of space before placement of space maintainer.

Adult teeth that may be erupting in a wrong way damaging adjacent baby teeth that is not ready to fall out.

Age 10-14 All other orthodontic problems

In many cases, child who initiated early treatment may also need to undergo additional treatment between age 10-14 to achieve more ideal orthodontic result.

Again, the best way to determine when your child needs to initiate orthodontic treatment is to consult with you child’s general dentist or pediatric dentist.