Early treatment

Early treatment

Timing is everything – even when it comes to your child’s smile. While people of any age can benefit from orthodontic treatment, we recommend children ages eight years old and up visit us for an initial assessment. This allows our specialist orthodontists to evaluate your child’s existing and incoming teeth, determining whether early treatment might be necessary.

When you choose Ilam Orthodontics, you can be assured that you have selected a specialist orthodontist who is an expert in facial growth. Each specialist on our team possesses the skills and experience to give your child their best smile.


How do I know if my child needs early orthodontic treatment?

There are several ways you can determine whether your child may need early orthodontic treatment. If you observe any of these characteristics or behaviours, you should seek an assessment from our specialist orthodontists:

  • Early loss of baby teeth
  • If any your child’s teeth do not meet properly when biting
  • Mouth breathing and/or snoring
  • If your child’s front teeth are crowded (you generally won’t see this until the child is about seven or eight years old)
  • Extra or missing teeth
  • Excessively spaced teeth
  • Protruding front teeth
  • Biting or chewing difficulties
  • An overbite or underbite
  • A speech impediment
  • If your child’s jaw shifts to the side when he or she opens or closes their mouth
  • If your child is older than five years and still sucks a thumb or finger
  • Hiding teeth when smiling or having a lack of confidence when smiling

Book an assessment

Early treatment

What is Invisalign?

Invisalign clear aligners are invisible, removable and comfortable aligners that no one can tell you're wearing. This means you can smile more during treatment as well as after. Invisalign is made with 3D computer imaging technology and has been proven clinically effective at treating most malocclusions. More than 5 million people around the world have chosen Invisalign to straighten their teeth and are smiling as a result!


Early orthodontic treatment begins while a child’s jaw bones are still soft. They do not harden until children reach their late teens. As the bones are still pliable, corrective procedures work faster and more effectively than they do for teens and adults. Appropriate early treatment is an effective interceptive measure that lays the foundation for a healthy and well-functioning mouth in adulthood.

While your child’s teeth may appear aligned and straight, there could be underlying issues that need to be addressed in order to prevent more serious problems from developing. Early intervention may mean that later orthodontic treatment will be more straightforward and completed in a shorter amount of time. This could also be financially beneficial in the long run!

There are generally three outcomes of an initial orthodontic assessment:

  • No treatment is expected to be necessary
  • Treatment may be needed in the future, so we will monitor your child’s smile periodically while their face and jaws continue to grow
  • There is a problem that lends itself to early treatment

Choose an Ilam Orthodontics orthodontist to complete an initial assessment and provide an early diagnosis.

Book a consultation

Early treatment


All of our orthodontic solutions at Ilam Orthodontics utilise the latest technology and most effective approaches for creating a straighter smile. Plus, our bespoke treatments allow us to create a customised programme that is unique for your child.

Our early treatment options include: 

  • Functional appliances
  • Removable appliances
  • Fixed braces with clear porcelain brackets
  • Invisalign® clear aligners**
  • Retainers 

Learn more about how each one works and see which is right for your child. 

Our treatments

**Invisalign aligners are a registered medical device, you should always read and follow the label and the instructions of your treating orthodontist.

Early treatment

What our
patients say

Thank you for your expertise, friendliness and professionalism,but most of all for the expert results and beautiful smiles all our three boys are now proud of. - Andrew & Christine

Patient stories

I can smile with confidence now! Lovely staff, very homely and exceptional service. Thank you iortho! - Te-Atawhai

Patient stories

Great investment – being confident to smile, you can’t really put a price on that. - Nadine

Great quality service! 10/10! I would never have thought through surgery and braces it would have been possible. The team catered for my every need. - Cole

I just wanted to say thank you for all you did to help Maddy get her teeth sorted before she heads to Dunedin for uni this year! I really appreciated you fitting her in with all her appointments just before her departure and for your great service as well. Thanks again for everything. - Tracy Taylor