Orthodontics aim to prevent and treat irregularities in the jaw and misalignment of the teeth that are the result of genetics, or develop in accordance with a child’s habits. The best way to achieve these goals is to have your child evaluated as early as age seven; however, children with noticeable facial irregularities may benefit from preventive orthodontic treatment several years earlier.
Some of the key signs that an orthodontic problem is present are as follows:
Difficulty chewing and biting
Jaws that click, shift or make noise as they move
Asymmetry in the face due to disproportionate jaws
Finger and thumb sucking
Bite misalignment (arches of teeth that do not meet properly)
Common Orthodontic Problems for Children
Children often experience overcrowding, jaw growth irregularities, protruding teeth and teeth that are too widely spaced. While some problems are inherited, main causes of acquired orthodontic irregularities are:
Inadequate nutrition or dental hygiene problems
Medical problems, such as birth defects
Habits such as thumb or finger sucking
Breathing through the mouth
Earlier or later loss of baby teeth than is considered normal
How Can we Help Your Child?
The ideal time to initiate treatment varies with each individual child and is based on their unique diagnosis.
Early orthodontic treatment is beneficial to reduce the amount and duration of later treatment, preventing more complex conditions from occurring. Through early intervention, we may be able to correct habits that lead to acquired irregularities, increase the confidence of the child, guide the growth of the jawbone, and decrease the risk of injury to protruding teeth.
If you have any further questions about orthodontics, please contact our office.