Early Treatment


The American Association of Orthodontists recommends that a child receives his or her first orthodontic screening by age 7. By starting treatment early, we are able to recognize potential problems and correct them before they become more serious. This will save you and your child time and money by preventing future problems before they begin.

Early interceptive orthodontic treatment has proven to be beneficial for the overall desired result. Because a young child's permanent teeth have not finished erupting, we are able to thoroughly evaluate and address any impending problems at the earliest stage.

During your child's initial evaluation, we will first determine if there are any problems that need to be addressed, such as potential crowding, open bite, overbite or gummy smiles. The Phase I treatment plan can include preventive, interceptive or modifying treatment. Orthodontic appliances may be placed to prevent a problem from occurring, correct a current problem or help direct jawbone growth. Multiple problems with tooth alignment, gums, jaws and facial problems can be corrected with Phase I treatment.

Pre-Orthodontic Guidance Appointments

If orthodontic treatment is not needed yet, we will place your child into our Smile Hunter Club.  Dr. McReath feels strongly about the necessity of following dental development and have found if orthodontic treatment is started at the appropriate time, treatment costs, length and discomfort can be reduced in many cases. 

Dr. McReath will re-examine your child's mouth on a periodic basis and explain his recommendations along with the future possibilities in treatment.  These visits are a courtesy to your family and are done at no charge.  Any necessary photos or x-rays needed in our office or future check-up visits with us are also done as a courtesy service to you until a point in time when necessary treatment is determined.  

Dr. McReath will continue to watch at six month intervals to make sure baby teeth are falling out when they should, the permanent teeth have the available room to grow in and any bite related problems are not getting worse.  Dr. McReath is one of the few orthodontists in the area who handle pre-orthodontic guidance at this comprehensive level.  

Dr. McReath wants to stay ahead of any developing dental problems and watch growth so we can intercept any dental or jaw growth problems before they get too complicated.  In addition, Dr. McReath would like to be able to communicate with your general dentist about your child's future dental needs.  

At the point that Dr. McReath sees the orthodontic problems are significant enough to take care of, Dr. McReath will develop a treatment plan and will review the details with you. 
To find out if your child is a candidate for early interceptive treatment, schedule a consultation.