Early Treatment

When is the best time to begin early orthodontic treatment?

Though an orthodontist can enhance a smile at any age, there is an optimal time period to begin treatment. Beginning treatment at this time ensures the greatest result and the least amount of time and expense. The American Association of Orthodontists recommends that the initial orthodontic evaluation should occur at the first sign of orthodontic problems or no later than age 7. At this early age, orthodontic treatment may not be necessary, but vigilant examination can anticipate the most advantageous time to begin treatment.

Early Orthodontic Treatment Pros and Cons

Early evaluation provides both timely detection of problems and greater opportunity for more effective treatment. Prudent intervention guides growth and development, preventing serious problems later. When orthodontic intervention is not necessary, an orthodontist can carefully monitor growth and development and begin treatment when it is ideal.

There aren’t many cons to early orthodontic treatment, but parents do have to understand that early orthodontic treatment is a commitment. Children must commit to maintaining proper oral hygiene, and parents must commit to ensuring that their children are brushing and flossing their teeth regularly.

Luckily, proper oral hygiene is necessary with or without braces, so early orthodontic treatment doesn’t present any considerable cons.

It is our priority to educate our patients as much as possible! We will explain everything you need to know about early orthodontic treatment when you schedule your child’s consultation with us.

Why is age 7 considered the optimal time for screening?

Why is 7 considered the best age for orthodontic treatment? By the age of 7, the first adult molars erupt, establishing the back bite. During this time, an orthodontist can evaluate front-to-back and side-to-side tooth relationships. For example, the presence of erupting incisors can indicate possible overbite, open bite, crowding or gummy smiles. Timely screening increases the chances for an incredible smile.

What are the advantages of interceptive treatment?

Some of the most direct results of interceptive treatment are:

  • Creating room for crowded, erupting teeth
  • Creating facial symmetry through influencing jaw growth
  • Reducing the risk of trauma to protruding front teeth
  • Preserving space for unerupted teeth
  • Reducing the need for tooth removal
  • Reducing treatment time with braces

Are you a candidate for orthodontic treatment?

Orthodontics is not merely for improving the aesthetics of the smile; orthodontic treatment improves bad bites (malocclusions). Malocclusions occur as a result of tooth or jaw misalignment. Malocclusions affect the way you smile, chew, clean your teeth or feel about your smile.

Why should malocclusions be treated?

According to studies by the American Association of Orthodontists, untreated malocclusions can result in a variety of problems. Crowded teeth are more difficult to properly brush and floss, which may contribute to tooth decay and/or gum disease. Protruding teeth are more susceptible to accidental chipping. Crossbites can result in unfavorable growth and uneven tooth wear. Openbites can result in tongue-thrusting habits and speech impediments. Ultimately, orthodontics does more than make a pretty smile—it creates a healthier you.

Contact us to schedule an appointment. We have offices in West Spartanburg, East Spartanburg, Duncan, Union and Gaffney.

Early orthodontic treatment is important but the teen years present the perfect time for braces! Permanent teeth have erupted and are stabilizing, and the gums are ideally impressionable during these years.

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See What People Are Saying About Us

I went to get the scans done for my aligners. I love the staff here! They’re always so nice and welcoming. Very helpful and I look forward to my future appointments here!

Ashlee Tines

Ashlee Tines


Awesome Doctors and Staff!  Highly recommend!!

Zach Thomas

Zach Thomas


As an older adult I recently went to Dr. Nease for an Invisalign consult.  His staff is highly professional, friendly and all around awesome.  I am so excited to work with Dr. Nease and get started on my Invisalign journey.  It’s never to late to improve your smile.

Debbi Herman

Debbi Herman


East Spartanburg

2455 E. Main Street
Spartanburg, SC 29307
(864) 579-7700

West Spartanburg

212 E. Blackstock Rd.
Spartanburg, SC 29301
(864) 587-8000


1785 E. Main Street
Duncan, SC 29334
(864) 579-7700


111 Northgate Road
Gaffney, SC 29341
(864) 579-7700


209 E. South St
Union, SC 29379
(864) 587-8000

Nease & Higginbotham Orthodontics © 2020. All rights reserved.

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