Your Child's First Orthodontic Checkup

AAO Exclusive Contact Image

No Later than Age Seven

As a parent, you want the best for your child. That includes healthy teeth and a pleasing smile. Start with regular dental care.

The American Dental Association recommends that a child visit the dentist by his or her first birthday, when baby (primary) teeth are emerging. Your dentist can alert you to any concerns about how the teeth and jaws are developing. But parents can also be the first to recognize a problem with the alignment of teeth and jaws.

AAO Brochure

All kids should get a checkup with an orthodontist no later than age seven

To have a healthy smile that’s good for life®, your son or daughter needs teeth and jaws that are properly aligned. The American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) recommends that every child get a checkup with an orthodontist at the first recognition of a potential orthodontic problem, but no later than age seven. By then, your little one has enough permanent teeth for an orthodontist to determine whether an orthodontic problem exists or is developing.

Putting off a checkup with an orthodontist until a child has lost all the baby teeth could be a disservice. Some orthodontic problems may be easier to correct if they’re found early. A checkup no later than age seven gives us the opportunity to recommend the appropriate treatment at the appropriate time. If early treatment is in order, we may be able to achieve results that would be far more challenging once the face and jaws have finished growing.

If you have any questions or concerns throughout your treatment or in the future, please consult our office or visit

©2013 American Association of Orthodontists.