First Orthodontist Visit Gainesville And Lake City Fl

Parents often wonder about the perfect timing for orthodontic treatment to ensure the best outcomes for their child’s smile. Understanding the signs that your child might need braces and knowing the ideal age for starting treatment are crucial steps. Thanks to years of experience, our Gainesville and Lake City, FL, orthodontists can take note of developmental cues and dental milestones so you have a clear idea of when it’s time to consider braces. 

Here are ways to tell if treatment is on the horizon for your child and what to expect at their first orthodontist appointment.

Key Signs Your Child May Need Orthodontic Treatment

Beyond what you can visibly see, it’s hard to know the scope of your child’s dental issues. Most often, it is a family dentist who catches and takes note of how the teeth and jaws are growing. 


If an abnormality is found during a routine check-up, such as a misaligned bite, your child’s dentist will discuss the finding with you and determine next steps, such as scheduling an initial orthodontic consultation.  


Learn MoreHow Orthodontic Treatment Corrects Bites for the Better


There are also several behaviors you can pick up on while at home that can indicate a need for orthodontic treatment. Common examples most parents notice include prolonged thumb sucking or pacifier use.

Braces may also be beneficial if your child has:

  • Lost baby teeth prematurely or later than what’s expected for their age 
  • Crowded, crooked, or misplaced teeth
  • A tendency to breathe through their mouth more than the nose
  • Problems with biting the inside of their cheeks or top of the mouth
  • Difficulty chewing, biting, or speaking
  • Displayed excessive grinding or clenching of the teeth
  • A crossbite, underbite, overbite, or open bite (where the top and bottom teeth don’t meet) 

The Best Age for a Child’s Orthodontic Evaluation

The American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) recommends that children undergo an orthodontic evaluation around the time they turn 7 years old. At this age, your child will have a mixture of baby and permanent teeth so our orthodontists can see how they are all coming in and if any problems are forming.


Now, if your child is older than 7 and has not yet been evaluated, it’s perfectly normal. While that age is a starting point for early orthodontic intervention, children can still go in for a check-up if they are 8 or above. However, if more severe dental problems exist, it is best to have our orthodontists take a closer look sooner than later. 


Arising issues regarding your child’s oral health should be taken seriously and not ignored in hopes they’ll resolve on their own. Treatable problems are always better corrected while your child is younger so keep this in mind when considering whether to seek out orthodontists like ours.


Expectations for You & Your Child

Your child’s first orthodontic appointment is all about observation and general discussion. Typically, this visit should take between 1-2 hours though this timeframe can vary per patient. The main objective centers around examining your child’s mouth, teeth, and jaws.


During the appointment, you can expect that X-rays will be taken of your child’s mouth to give our orthodontists an idea of the issues at hand and how they can be remedied. Your child will also be asked to bite down so we can see how the top and bottom teeth come together. 


If orthodontic treatment is needed, you’ll be briefed on every detail so both you and your child know what to expect. At Progressive Orthodontics, we offer several treatment options aside from metal braces like clear ceramic braces, Progressive aligners, and Invisalign® clear aligners. 

We’ll also go over the following to guarantee everyone is on the same page:

  • What the key issue is and why it’s important to fix
  • Whether tooth extraction or another type of oral surgery is needed
  • The length of treatment
  • How much treatment will cost and available payment options


In addition to what we do inside our offices, our orthodontists will work with your child’s dentist throughout their treatment to ensure their teeth are kept clean and healthy as corrections are made. 

Make an Appointment

Whether your child is showing early signs of dental issues or you’re planning ahead, our orthodontists in Gainesville and Lake City, FL, agree that getting the timing right can make a significant difference in treatment effectiveness and your child’s overall comfort and confidence. Call one of our Progressive Orthodontics offices today to request an appointment!

Get Started Today

If you’re ready to achieve your dream smile, contact our office today!