Welcome to our first blog of 2010! June is here and so is summer vacation (and summer heat!) My team and I would like to personally congratulate all of our 5th grade, 8th grade, high school and college graduates. You have worked hard and now you are ready to move on to that next phase of life. Congratulations! We hope your next step helps make all your goals and dreams come true!
Last week someone asked me a very common question and I thought I might take a moment to address it. The question was: "My child is only 6 or 7, when should I bring him in to see you?" That is a great question because quite often there are only a few permanent teeth in and it might seem like an inconvenience to see a young patient when nothing may need to be done for years. The truth, however, is that I would ALWAYS rather see a child too early than too late. The American Association of Orthodontics actually recommends children be evaluated by an orthodontist by age 7.
In our office, roughly 40% of our new patient examinations go into an observation or "growth and guidance" system and do not need immediate active treatment and this is great.
Evaluating kids early is beneficial for several reasons:
1. I can monitor facial growth and dental development and be assured we are starting a your child at the optimum time (and this varies greatly among boys and girls).
2. I can have a chart started and partial records on file such as an x-ray, photograhs or exam notes in case your family dentist (or pedodontist) has an orthodontic question that may require an immediate answer (i.e. should we remove a problematic primary tooth?).
3. Should a traumatic accident occur (though we hope not!), your child is already a patient of record and I can be called upon in case the family dentist or pediatric dentist is not available.
4. It allows me to predict the timing, nature and costs for future treatment for your family (really important for those big families or those planning for FSA benefits!)
5. Seeing a child for several observation visits gives me a chance to get to know your child a little more, and more importantly:
6. It gives your child the chance to get to know us.
7. And lastly, it allows your child to be eligible for contest prizes and events and enrolled in our very exciting "Guppy Grinzs Club!"
So in other words, please never feel like you are asking me to evaluate your children too early...we prefer it this way!
Hope to see you soon!