When is Phase 1 Orthodontic Treatment Necessary for Your Child?

Understanding the Importance of Early Orthodontic Treatment

Phase 1 Orthodontic Treatment For Kids In Jersey city Nj

As a pediatric dentist, I often get asked by parents when they should start thinking about orthodontic treatment for their children. The answer is not always straightforward as it depends on each child’s unique dental situation. However, in many cases, early orthodontic treatment or Phase 1 orthodontics can be beneficial.

In this article, we will explore what Phase 1 orthodontics entails and when it may be necessary for your child.

What is Phase 1 Orthodontics?

Phase 1 orthodontics, also known as interceptive orthodontics or early intervention orthodontics, refers to the first phase of two-phase treatment that some children may need to undergo. This phase typically begins around age six or seven and lasts until the child’s permanent teeth have fully erupted.

During this phase of treatment, an orthodontist will evaluate your child’s bite and jaw alignment to identify any potential issues that could worsen over time if left untreated. They may recommend various appliances such as braces, expanders or headgear to correct these problems before they become more severe.

When is Phase 1 Orthodontic Treatment Necessary?

Now that you understand what Phase 1 orthodontics entails, let us explore when it may be necessary for your child:

Crowding – If your child has crowded teeth where there isn’t enough space in their mouth for all their permanent teeth to come in properly aligned; then they would benefit from early intervention with braces or other appliances.

Crossbite – A crossbite occurs when the upper and lower jaws are misaligned causing one or more upper teeth to bite inside instead of outside the lower teeth. This can lead to uneven wear on teeth surfaces over time if left untreated.

Underbite/Overbite –  underbite or overbite is when the lower jaw protrudes past the upper jaw or vice versa. This can cause problems with chewing and speaking and may even lead to facial deformities if left untreated.

Thumb Sucking – If your child has a thumb-sucking habit that has not stopped by age six, it could cause dental problems such as an open bite where the front teeth do not meet when biting down.

Speech Problems – If your child has difficulty speaking clearly, it could be due to dental issues such as a misaligned bite, which can be corrected with early orthodontic treatment.

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Benefits of Early Orthodontic Treatment

Early orthodontic treatment offers several benefits for children:

Preventive Measures – By identifying and treating potential dental issues early on, we can prevent more severe problems from developing later in life. This means less invasive treatments down the road.

Improved Self-Esteem – Correcting dental issues at an early age can improve a child’s self-esteem by giving them a beautiful smile of which they can be proud.

Better Oral Health – Straight teeth are easier to clean, reducing the risk of tooth decay and gum disease later in life.


In conclusion, Phase 1 orthodontics is necessary when your child has crowded teeth, crossbites or underbites/overbites that need correction before they become more severe. It is also beneficial for children who have thumb-sucking habits that have not stopped by age six or speech difficulties caused by misaligned bites. Early intervention offers several benefits such as preventive measures against future problems, improved self-esteem and better oral health overall.

If you think your child may benefit from Phase 1 orthodontics or want to learn more about this type of treatment; please schedule an appointment with our Childrens Dentists in Bloomfield NJ today!