When to See an Orthodontist

Whether you have a child in need of braces, or you’re an adult looking to attain the smile you’ve always wanted, it’s important to know when to visit the orthodontist. If you’re at all curious as to whether you may need treatment, feel free to take a free virtual smile assessment, where we make it easy for you to find out whether braces may be right for you.

Early Treatment

While there is no exact age for children to begin orthodontic treatment, the American Association of Orthodontists recommends visiting the orthodontist around age 7. By this age, most children have a mix of baby teeth and adult teeth, making it an ideal time for Dr. Hulse to diagnose and correct tooth and/or jaw problems.

The following is a list of observations for which we recommend that you call Hulse Orthodontics to schedule a complimentary evaluation:

  • 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

Similar to the above, here are a few reasons that Early Treatment might be advisable:

  • Correct and guide the growth of your child’s jaw to help the permanent teeth come in straight
  • Kids’ braces regulate the width of the upper and lower arches
  • Create more space for crowded teeth
  • Avoid the need for permanent tooth extractions or surgery later in life
  • Correct thumb sucking and help improve minor speech problems

Please contact the office to schedule an appointment for an orthodontic evaluation. Early treatment now will give your child a healthy, beautiful smile for the future.

Adolescent & Teenage Treatment

The most common age range during which people seek orthodontic treatment, statistically, is adolescence, between ages 11 and 15. By the age of 12, most of the permanent teeth have erupted and are settled in place. As such, most issues with crooked teeth, gaps and bad bites are readily apparent to the patient and his/her guardians. Hardly ever will any of the problems listed above correct themselves over time and because of this most parents make the decision to seek orthodontic treatment for their children during the adolescent years.

A major reason that the pre-teen and teenage years are a popular time for children to undergo orthodontic treatment is psychological. So many children are in braces during this period that there is little reason for them to feel self-conscious and are therefore excited to have braces themselves. Perhaps the greatest benefit to orthodontic treatment during adolescence is purely biological. Because of the growth that children experience during these years, Dr. Hulse can help shape the patient’s bite and teeth more comfortably and with greater control. Also, thanks to the typical teenage metabolism, the overall treatment time can be less than treatment sought later in life.

Adult Treatment

It is NEVER “too late” for orthodontic treatment. Is there ever an age that it’s “too late” to love your smile? Or is there a “too old” to achieve a healthy tooth alignment or high self-confidence? Absolutely not!

So it’s probably no surprise that the American Association of Orthodontists reports that one in four orthodontic patients are adults (over the age of 21). Our practice recognizes that adults and children have different needs, and require a different level of attention and care. That’s why we offer several key advantages for adult patients:

  • Invisible options for EVERY patient, including Invisalign and clear braces
  • Individual treatment rooms, instead of the large open bays typical of most orthodontic offices
  • No “premium” fee for adult patients

Thanks to the latest advancements in orthodontic technology, the techniques and appliances we use greatly reduce discomfort levels, decrease the frequency of visits and shorten treatment time.

We’ll work with you to ensure that your needs are met with respect and understanding. Call our team today to book an appointment and find out how adult orthodontic care by Dr. Hulse can change your life!