For Children

Orthodontic Treatment For Children 

kid with candy

At Pristera Orthodontics we are passionate about creating new, healthy smiles for all of our patients, using a caring & personalized approach that will make every orthodontic visit a pleasant one.  We also utilize only the most advanced orthodontic technology & procedures to ensure that your kids receive the professional level care that they deserve.  

When taking your kids to the orthodontist, things can get a little confusing with all of the questions that you may have.  That’s why Dr. Pristera & our friendly orthodontic staff are here to answer those questions and guide you & your kids through the process.  Below you’ll find some common questions that we receive about our children’s orthodontic treatment process, and our answers: 

When Should My Child See An Orthodontist?

Dr. Pristera can fix anyone’s smile at any age. But he, like the American Association of Orthodontists, suggests you bring your child in for his or her first exam by age 7. If you or your dentist notice a problem before your child is 7 years old, of course give us a call then.  

Is 7 Too Early for My Kid’s Orthodontic Treatment? 

Dr. Pristera has found many advantages to treating kids early for some conditions. Finding out early if your child has orthodontic problems can give you and your orthodontist more time to figure out the best treatment. If your child does need treatment, Dr. Pistera is able to guide the growth of both your child’s incoming teeth and jaw. Treating your child early can: make more room for teeth that haven’t come in yet: help them not lose or fracture protruding teeth; make sure that their jaws and teeth meet correctly during chewing; and get rid of bad habits like thumb or finger sucking.

Does Early Orthodontic Treatment Benefit All Kids?

Not all kids will benefit from early treatment. Some types of orthodontic problems are easier to correct once your child reaches his or her teenage years when all of their permanent teeth have grown in. Also, there some skeletal orthodontic issues that Dr. Pristera won’t fix until your child stops growing. If your child needs treatment, but it’s not time yet, he or she will become a part of our growth guidance program at Pristera Orthodontics. 

Our Kids Growth Guidance Program – What Is it?

Our Growth Guidance Program is for kids who will eventually need orthodontic treatment, but they’re just not quite ready yet. In this program, we’ll monitor your child’s dental development and their permanent teeth as they come in until the best time for braces placement. Sometimes, if Dr. Pristera removes your child’s baby teeth, it will help the permanent teeth come in and your child won’t have to be in braces as long. Dr. Pristera will always talk with your dentist about any recommendations we have regarding any dental treatment needed.

Dr. Pristera will examine your child’s mouth every three to six months to make sure that his or her baby teeth are coming out when they should, the permanent teeth emerge properly and have enough room to grow, and there are no additional bite-related issues. Because we feel so strongly about growth guidance, we do not charge for these visits or for x-rays taken during this time.

At the best time for your child, he or she will move from our Growth Guidance Program into our Early Treatment phase. One big benefit of early treatment is that it can start fixing any major orthodontic problems or keep serious orthodontic problems from happening. Phase II, or teen treatment, will usually be needed since all of the permanent teeth don’t come in during early treatment. Phase II treatment completes the correction of teeth alignment, usually using braces or Invisalign clear aligners. There are some cases where your kid may not need any orthodontic treatment after his or her early treatment. 

Should Kids Still See Their Family Dentist While Getting Orthodontic Treatment? 

Yes! All kids need to see their regular dentist to keep their teeth clean and gums healthy every six months. If your child is in braces, it’s easier for food particles to get lodged in brackets and develop bacteria, plaque and gum disease. Make regular check-up appointments with your dentist.

Dr. Pristera and his staff of friendly professionals are experienced at working with kids of all ages. Whether it’s braces, Invisalign or orthodontic surgery, you can count on us to care for your child just like we would our own.  If you or your dentist notices an orthodontic problem with your child’s teeth, or if your child is 7-years-old, contact us today for your first orthodontic exam at (425) 430-1320. Your child’s first visit will be pleasant and informative as Dr. Pristera examines your child’s teeth and recommends treatment options, if needed. We look forward to getting your child’s smile on the happy and healthy right track!