Get a Head Start on a Lifetime of Smiles
As a parent in Rapid City, you want the best for your child and that includes healthy teeth and a beaming smile.
Benefits of Early Evaluation
Your child needs teeth and jaws that are properly aligned to have a smile that's long-lasting and healthy—in other words, a good bite. While there is no exact age that children begin orthodontic treatment, Dr. Hudson and the American Association of Orthodontists recommend visiting the orthodontist around age seven.
By seven, your child's teeth have developed enough for subtle problems with jaw growth and emerging teeth to be assessed at Rapid City Orthodontics, even if some baby teeth are still present.
This check-up may reveal that your child's bite is fine and braces aren't necessary. In some cases, Dr. Hudson may identify a developing problem, but recommend monitoring your child's growth and development, then, when indicated, begin treatment at the appropriate time for your child.
In other cases, Dr. Hudson might find a problem that can benefit from early treatment.
What is Early Treatment?
Early treatment may prevent or intercept more serious problems from developing and may make treatment at a later age shorter, simpler, and less expensive.
In some cases, Dr. Hudson will be able to achieve results that may not be possible if the face and jaw finish growing.
When's the Best Time for Treatment?
If Dr. Hudson thinks your child will need treatment, he’ll let you know when it will be best to begin. This gives your orthodontist the best chance to:
- Correct and guide the growth of your child's jaw to help the permanent teeth come in straight
- Regulate the width of the upper and lower arches
- Create more space for crowded teeth
- Avoid the need for permanent tooth extractions later in life
- Correct thumb sucking and help improve minor speech problems
Signs the Bite's Not Right
For parents all around Rapid City and the Black Hills, it's not always easy to know if your child may need orthodontic treatment. Even teeth that look straight may be hiding a deeper problem with their bite.
Here are some clues that may indicate the need for orthodontic attention with Dr. Hudson:
- Early or late loss of baby teeth
- A hard time chewing or biting food
- Mouth breathing
- Finger or thumb sucking
- Crowded, misplaced, or blocked teeth
- Jaws that pop or make sounds when opening and closing
- Teeth that come together abnormally or do not come together at all
- Jaws and teeth that are not proportionate to the rest of the face
- Crowded front teeth around age seven or eight