Braces For Kids – Pre-Orthodontic Observation

Braces For Kids – Pre-Orthodontic Observation

It all starts with your child’s first exam.  The American Association of Orthodontists recommends that all children be evaluated by an orthodontic specialist by age 7.  At this initial evaluation Dr. Webb will evaluate your child’s jaws, bite relationship, crowding and spacing issues, any possible social concerns your child may have, as well as screen your child’s jaws and soft tissue for pathology.  From this initial exam, if there would be any benefit to performing early treatment, or Phase I, Dr. Webb will explain that option. However, most children are ready to join our Observation program and have their growth and development monitored every 6 months.

Phase I Treatment

Phase I treatment is typically aimed at correcting major bite issues, severe crowding or spacing, or social concerns that your child may have.  Phase I treatment usually lasts around a year. The goal of Phase I treatment is generally to set your child up for an easier and more successful round of comprehensive treatment in the future.  Phase I treatment typically consists of limited braces and appliances, like an expander. After Phase I treatment is complete, your child will enter into our observation program so we can monitor continued growth and development.

Why Is Pre-Orthodontic Observation Needed?

There are several reasons that pre-orthodontic observation is so important for children. These include:

  • Evaluating the Primary and Adult Teeth: Many young patients are waiting until all of their adult teeth arrive to begin teeth straightening. Dr. Webb will keep track of lost primary teeth and erupting adult teeth at each pre-orthodontic observation visit. If baby teeth aren’t falling out when they should or if X-rays reveal that the permanent teeth will erupt in the wrong way, Dr. Webb can recommend removal of the problem teeth to keep your child’s bite as healthy as possible. This evaluation allows Dr. Webb to spot problems early, which often means that your child can avoid more complicated and lengthy treatment later.
  • Planning Future Treatment: During pre-orthodontic observation, Dr. Webb can consult with you regarding your child’s future treatment. You can work together with Dr. Webb to plan the optimal time to begin treatment. This will ensure that the braces aren’t worn for longer than necessary. By starting with pre-orthodontic observation early, you gain much more control over how and when your child gets braces — and you also ensure that everything is done at the best possible time.
  • Routine evaluation of the jaws and soft tissue is also a great way to monitor the presence of any pathology.

WFO Kids Club Details and Perks

Join and receive free orthodontic exams until you’re ready for braces! Not only are these pre-orthodontic observation appointments important to monitor growth and development, plan optimal timing for treatment, provide a great screening tool for possible pathology, but it can also be fun and engaging for your child.

Some of the perks include:

  • Free Pre-Orthodontic Exams!
  • Exclusive Contests & Events
  • Collect Exclusive Pins Each Visit!
  • Meet Webbster, the staff at WFO and so much more!

What Do Observation Appointments Cost?

There is no cost for the pre-orthodontic observation appointments.  We provide x-rays and a thorough exam, all at no charge. And we do not bill your insurance for observation exams.

Ready to Schedule a Pre-Orthodontic Observation?

Webb Family Orthodontics offers pre-orthodontic observations to kids ages 6+.  Ideally, we would like to evaluate all patients by age 7. The sooner that you know what your child is facing, the better and more effective their orthodontic care can be, so don’t hesitate to arrange a visit with Dr. Webb anytime. Contact us today to schedule your appointment. We look forward to helping your child achieve their healthiest and straightest smile!

Be sure to book your complimentary screening exam by age 7

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Frequently Asked Questions

  • What kind of braces do you offer?

    At Webb Family Orthodontics, we have traditional metal braces, clear ceramic braces, and Invisalign. We are a leading provider of Invisalign and Incognito in the area.

  • Are Braces Painful? How Do I Ease the Pain?

    At our office, we make your braces experience as comfortable as possible. Although braces do take some getting used to, we find that our patients adjust within 1-2 days after getting their braces, and have a great experience at our office. Braces aren't generally painful, but you may feel a bit sore the first few days after getting them. This soreness is quite normal, and it won't last for long and can usually be managed with an over-the-counter pain reliever like ibuprofen or Tylenol. If you're experiencing lip, cheek, or tongue irritation in the weeks immediately after getting braces, some wax can alleviate the problem quickly. We're happy to provide the wax for you!

  • How Long Will I Have to Have Braces?

    The amount of time that you'll need to wear braces depends on several factors, including the severity of your bite problem and the nature of the issue. Most patients need to wear braces for 12 to 24 months, but it may be shorter or longer for you. Dr. Webb will discuss your case with you and give you a general idea of what to expect. After you've had the braces on for several months, the progress can be measured more easily, and Dr. Webb may be able to give you an update on how long you can expect to wear braces.

  • Can I Get Braces That Are Less Noticeable?

    Yes, you can — in fact, there are several options for less noticeable braces today. Invisalign is a popular option because it straightens teeth using transparent plastic trays that fit your teeth like a second skin with no wires or brackets at all. Another popular choice for less noticeable braces is porcelain or ceramic braces. While these are traditional braces in terms of function, the brackets are made from a tooth-colored porcelain or ceramic that blends in with your teeth to make them much less obvious.

  • What Foods Should I Avoid While I Have Braces?

    There are a few things to keep in mind when eating while you have braces, including: 

    • Avoid sticky foods. Foods like caramel can get stuck in your braces and cause discomfort. 
    • Cut up crunchy foods. Apples, corn on the cob, etc can be tough to chew with braces, cutting them into smaller pieces will help!
    • Avoid strong candies - like Jawbreakers. 
  • How Do I Brush My Teeth With Braces?

    We recommend brushing after every meal with braces.  Holding the toothbrush properly and brushing the correct areas on the teeth is necessary to ensure proper brushing.  Please watch our video to improve your brushing skills here

  • Can I play sports while in braces?


    We also offer mouth guards to wear over the braces while playing sports. Mouth guards protect your teeth and the braces during physical activity and our doctor recommends wearing them.

  • Do you offer before and after school appointments?


    Webb Family Orthodontics offers a number of appointment times M-F to accommodate your busy schedule. 

  • How much do braces cost?

    The cost of braces can vary depending on which type of braces you have, how long you need treatment, and other factors unique to your situation. We at Webb Family Orthodontics understand that the financial aspect of braces is something that many patients worry about, and we're here to help. We offer payment plans and are willing to work within your budget to help you get the orthodontic care you need. Contact us anytime to learn more!

  • How do I get started?

    It's simple!  Call our office at 423-870-5254 to set up your free consultation or request a free consultation online here.