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Early Intervention

Orthodontics located in Southwest Portland, Beaverton, OR

Early Intervention
Early Intervention services offered in Southwest Portland, Beaverton, OR

If your child has a mix of baby and permanent teeth, early intervention can reduce the risk of alignment issues and encourage optimal oral health. At Ensley Orthodontics in Beaverton, Oregon, experienced orthodontists Kevin Ensley, DMD, and Sara Edmondson, DMD, offer early intervention to children with crowded teeth, bite abnormalities, and misaligned jaws. Call Ensley Orthodontics today to see if your child can benefit from early intervention, or make an appointment online.

Early Intervention Q & A

What is early intervention in orthodontics?

Early intervention, or interceptive treatment, is an orthodontic subspecialty that treats children and teens who have both baby and permanent teeth. If your child has mixed dentition (primary and adult teeth), they’re more likely to experience issues like tooth decay, gum disease, and bone loss.

Early intervention may be in your child’s best interest if they have an alignment issue that will worsen with time. 


What types of issues can benefit from early intervention?

Ensley Orthodontics uses early intervention to treat various alignment issues in children and teens, including:

  • Crowded teeth
  • Excessively spaced teeth
  • Extra or missing teeth
  • Crossbites
  • Underbites

Your child may benefit from early intervention if they suck their thumb or fingers. Sometimes, these habits affect the alignment and growth of the teeth and jaw.


What does early intervention involve?

At Ensley Orthodontics, the providers tailor early orthodontic intervention to each child’s needs. They may recommend:

Waiting and watching

Every child’s smile is unique. Sometimes, alignment issues improve over time without any intervention. For example, as your child’s jaws grow, more space may open for their permanent teeth to erupt. 


Treatment with orthodontic appliances

If your child has a bite abnormality or a misaligned jaw, their orthodontist prescribes an orthodontic appliance, like a retainer, braces, or removable oral mouthpieces. 

Orthodontic appliances put mild pressure on your child’s teeth or jaw, improving their alignment and position. 



If your child has impacted teeth –– permanent teeth that are unable to break through the gumline –– they may need extractions. Extractions can help the permanent teeth erupt and reduce the risk of infection.

Often, children who need early intervention benefit from both orthodontic appliances and extractions.


Is early intervention always necessary?

No. At Ensley Orthodontics, the providers try to keep orthodontic treatment to a single phase whenever possible. Unfortunately, certain alignment issues pose a risk to your child’s long-term oral health. 

Early intervention is precisely timed to complement the growth of your child’s jaw and teeth. It’s safe, effective, and results in beautiful and healthy smiles. 

Call Ensley Orthodontics today to schedule an early intervention consultation for your child, or book an appointment online.