Members of the American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) help children, teenagers and adults achieve healthy, beautiful smiles. The AAO is the global voice of orthodontics. Its 19,000 members in the U.S., Canada and abroad are dentistry's specialists in orthodontic care. Orthodontists limit their scope of practice to orthodontics. Only orthodontists can be AAO members. Orthodontists' extensive specialty education (2-3 years of studying orthodontics at an accredited orthodontic residency program following graduation from dental school) qualifies them to treat patients of all ages, and draw upon the full range of devices available to move teeth and align jaws. AAO spokespersons are uniquely qualified to discuss the relationship of orthodontic health to whole body health, the trend of more adult patients, why the first orthodontic exam should occur no later than age 7, the physical and emotional benefits of orthodontic treatment, the dangers of DIY teeth straightening, and research.