Why Your Child Needs to See An Orthodontist by Age 7

Getting your child to an orthodontist at age 7 will help you keep their smile bright and healthy. Dr. Ragan (along with the American Association of Orthodontists) recommends that children see an orthodontist by age 7. Ragan Orthodontics has two locations in Dallas. Early visits with an orthodontist help spot potential issues with your child’s teeth or bite. In addition, we can make room for your child’s emerging grown-up teeth and shape how their jaw grows. Want to know why age 7 matters so much? 

The Importance of Early Orthodontic Evaluations

Seeing an orthodontist by age 7 helps us stay ahead of possible problems. Dr. Ragan can identify and address them before they get worse. Moreover, taking care of orthodontic problems earlier means less damage control later in life.

Bite Issues

By age 7, your child’s mouth has grown enough to show possible symptoms of “malocclusion” (read “bad bite” or “bite issues), like misaligned or crowded teeth. Catching bad bites early lets our team address them before they get worse. The sooner our team can do that, the more time and hassle you’ll save. 

Guiding Jaw Growth

Your child’s jaw is still developing, so early visits allow our Ragan Orthodontics team to Guide its growth in the right direction. When we preemptively guide your child’s jaw to grow as it should, they’ll feel more comfortable and confident. 

Creating Space for Emerging Teeth

If your child’s teeth are crowded, early orthodontic treatment by age 7 can make room for new teeth. On some occasions, it might involve removing baby teeth early and using expanders. Doing this at 7 makes it easier for your child’s adult teeth to come in properly.

Improving Self-Esteem

Dental issues can affect a child’s confidence. Smiling boosts mental health at any age. Early intervention can help create a healthy smile, which will boost your child’s sense of well-being. A self-assured smile can make a huge difference in a child’s life. With cell phones and social awareness at younger and younger ages, self-esteem is at an all-time low. With school research showing the amount of bullying increasing, the investment in young smiles has been effective in lessening the chances of your child experiencing this terrible trend.  


Interceptive or early orthodontic treatment can help prevent or minimize tooth and jaw injuries, especially with flared teeth. Teeth could come into contact with a ball, a hard object, another player, or the pavement. Soccer and basketball are the top two most dental injury sports. Straightening teeth and correcting bites decrease this chance of trauma exponentially while at the same time making straighter and more beautiful smiles.


As part of every evaluation at Ragan Orthodontics, increasing or maintaining the current airway is part of every treatment consideration. This may include a referral to see an allergist or ENT. Our goal is always airway-friendly treatment and we make sure parents have all the information and resources needed to achieve this goal. 

Why Your Child Needs to See An Orthodontist by Age 7

What to Expect During the First Visit

What happens the first time you come to Ragan Orthodontics? Find the office closest to you. Dr. Ragan and our team aim to make both you and your child feel as comfortable as possible.

Initial Examination

Dr. Ragan will take a close look at your child’s teeth, jaw, and bite. This initial examination helps identify any current issues and foresee potential future problems. It’s a simple and painless process. 

3D X-Rays and Impressions

X-rays may be taken so we can better understand your child’s dental development. Dr. Ragan uses 3D X-rays, which help us see not only your teeth and jaws but also your airway from nose to throat! These images show the position of both baby and adult teeth, as well as true bone patterns that are not visible during the exam. Additionally, impressions of the teeth might be made to create a model of your child’s mouth, and Dr. Ragan could show the parent and patient his findings. It helps in planning any necessary treatments.

Discussing Treatment Options

After the examination, intraoral scan, and X-rays, Dr. Ragan will review your child’s exam and X-ray findings with you and explain whether your child needs any treatments now or in the future using the 3D representation of your child’s teeth. This is a great time to ask questions and understand the steps ahead.

Creating a Treatment Plan

If your child needs treatment, Dr. Ragan will outline a plan tailored to your child’s needs. This could include no treatment, but many times include braces, expanders, bite correctors, or other orthodontic devices.

Why Your Child Needs to See An Orthodontist by Age 7

Potential Treatments for Young Children

Early orthodontic care at age 7 can involve various treatments tailored to your child’s needs. Here are some common options Dr. Ragan might recommend.


Braces help align teeth and correct bites, gradually moving teeth into their proper positions. In young children, braces are more than just tooth straighteners; they are used to gain and maintain space for future erupting teeth. We offer metal and WildSmiles braces (shaped braces with flowers, stars, hearts, footballs, and many more).


We use 3D-printed expanders to widen your child’s upper jaw to correct narrow bites and create more space for tooth eruption and alignment.. This treatment is particularly useful if your child’s mouth is too small to fit all their permanent teeth. Expanders are also used in conjunction with braces to make space, straighten teeth, and create healthy smiles.


Retainers can help hold teeth in their new positions after they’ve been aligned. They are often used after braces or other orthodontic treatments. Wearing a retainer ensures that teeth stay in place so we can maintain the results achieved by previous treatments. In some cases, the combination of early treatment and retainers will lessen or negate the need for braces as a teen.

The Long-Term Benefits

Starting orthodontic care at 7 can lead to a lifetime of brighter teeth and a confident smile. Here are some long-term benefits of early treatment.

Avoiding Severe Problems

Addressing orthodontic issues by age 7 can prevent them from becoming more serious. Treating minor problems now can avoid the need for more invasive procedures, like surgery, extraction of permanent teeth, and long treatments in high school (the most socially stressful time) later in life. 


Early orthodontic treatment can be more affordable in the long run. By tackling issues when they’re simpler to fix, you can reduce the higher costs of complex treatments that might be needed if problems are left unchecked.

Better Orthodontic Health

Did you know that properly aligned teeth are easier to keep clean? Clean teeth lessen your child’s risk of cavities and gum disease. Good alignment also helps with chewing and speaking and contributes to overall oral health. Early treatment sets the stage for healthier teeth and gums.

Compelling Confidence

A dazzling smile can greatly enhance your child’s confidence. Early orthodontic care can help your child feel good about their appearance, positively affecting their social interactions and self-esteem. A confident smile opens doors and creates positive first impressions.

Why Your Child Needs to See An Orthodontist by Age 7

Early Orthodontic Care With Dr. Ragan

You can visit Dr. Ragan in Dallas. To find out more about how Ragan Orthodontics can help your 7-year-old (or anyone in your family), visit us here to schedule a free consultation.