Phase 1 Orthodontic Treatment

Finding the Right Time to Start

As a parent in El Dorado, Monroe, or the surrounding areas, you want the best for your child. That includes healthy teeth and a comfortable, well-aligned smile.

At Williams Orthodontics, our goal is to treat your children as if they were our own, by providing them with the best possible orthodontic care and a friendly, fun atmosphere.

Get a Head Start on Oral Health With Early Evaluations for Your Child

There’s no minimum age for your child to begin orthodontic treatment, but Dr. Williams and the American Association of Orthodontists recommend that every child near El Dorado and Monroe should receive their first orthodontic evaluation by around the age of seven.

About 20% of kids ages 7-10 that we see at Williams Orthodontics need early treatment for major issues involving the bite, adult teeth that are not erupting correctly, or overcrowding.

Don’t fret if your little one needs early treatment though: early treatment can resolve problems before they cause major issues and usually shortens the second phase of treatment necessary once all their adult teeth are in.

A common cause of confusion among parents, about 20% of kids ages 7-10 need early treatment for major issues involving the bite, adult teeth that are not erupting correctly, or severe crowding.

By then, your child's teeth have developed enough for subtle problems with jaw growth and emerging teeth to still be spotted while some baby teeth are still present. This check-up may reveal that your child's bite is fine and braces for kids aren't necessary. We’ll never start treatment before it’s necessary.

Or, Dr. Williams may identify a developing problem but recommend monitoring your child's growth and development. He will then begin treatment when orthodontic and developmental cues indicate that it’s an appropriate time for your child. In other cases, Dr. Williams might find a problem that can benefit from early treatment.

How to Choose the Perfect Time for Treatment

While the age that kids get braces may vary, orthodontic treatment most often begins between the ages of 9 and 14. Some orthodontic problems are easier to correct if they are treated early.

If Dr. Williams thinks your child will need treatment, he let you know when it will be best to begin treatment. This gives your orthodontist the best chance to:

  • Guide jaw growth
  • Lower the risk of trauma to protruded front teeth
  • Correct harmful oral habits
  • Improve appearance and self-esteem in your child
  • Guide permanent teeth into a more favorable position
  • Create a more pleasing arrangement of teeth, lips, and face

What Is Early Treatment?

Sometimes called Phase 1 treatment, early treatment at Williams Orthodontics could prevent serious problems from emerging and may make treatment at a later age shorter and less complicated.

In some cases, Dr. Williams will be able to achieve results that may not be possible once your child's face and jaws finish growing.

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Signs the Bite's Not Right

It's not always easy to tell when your child in El Dorado and Monroe may need braces or has an orthodontic problem. Even teeth that look straight may be hiding a problem bite.

Here are some clues that may indicate the need for orthodontic attention from Dr. Williams:

  • Early or late loss of baby teeth
  • Difficulty chewing or biting
  • Breathing through the mouth
  • Thumb-sucking
  • Crowded, misplaced or blocked-out teeth
  • Jaws that are too far forward or back
  • Biting the cheek or biting into the roof of the mouth
  • Protruding teeth
  • Upper and lower teeth that don't meet, or meet in an abnormal way
  • An unbalanced facial appearance
  • Grinding or clenching of the teeth

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Learn More at Your First Consultation

If you would like to bring your child to Williams Orthodontics for an evaluation, please contact our offices in El Dorado, AR, or Monroe, LA to set up your consultation.

Dr. Williams would love to discuss your child's orthodontic options with you to develop a treatment plan that is customized to your child's specific needs and wants.