You may not realize it, but certain behaviors exhibited by your child may hold the key to whether or not they need to begin orthodontic treatment at an early age. In some cases, failure to address certain issues can result in severe dental problems developing later on in life, so it’s best to speak with your orthodontist about how to tackle these issues early on. When it comes to your child and the development of their teeth and jaws, fixing these issues is a must. Here’s how orthodontists fix early orthodontic problems.
Who Needs Early Orthodontic Treatment?
A child will typically need early orthodontic treatment if they are experiencing some difficulty with everyday tasks. There are common behaviors, which are exhibited in children who are candidates for early orthodontics. These behaviors can include:
- Difficulty chewing
- Speech problems
- Mouth breathing
- Early/late loss of baby teeth
- Thumb sucking after age five
Early orthodontic treatment normally begins between the ages of 8 and 9 with Phase One treatment. Phase Two will typically begin some time after age 11 or 12.
Fixing Early Orthodontic Issues
It’s important to find a Mt. Pleasant orthodontist who is well-versed in early orthodontic treatment, who can design a plan that will best suit your child. Phase One is recommended for some early help with issues that need addressed now. Expanders are one of the ways orthodontists help correct early orthodontic issues. These devices can help with jaw formation and can prevent issues such as crossbites, crowding and underbites from becoming worse. Palatal expanders widen the upper jaw to fit over the lower jaw properly. Since the jaw is still growing, palatal expanders do a successful job at mitigating these problems.
Another option for children who have some permanent teeth already in place is partial braces. Partial braces help to address issues with bite alignment, gaps, crowded teeth and crossbites in the front of the mouth. Typically, partial braces are placed on the front four to six teeth to help correct these issues.
Without Early Orthodontic Treatment
In not addressing these issues early on, children can run the risk of developing more severe problems as they get older. Jaw problems, speech impediments and difficulty with eating can become worse over time, making early orthodontic treatment extremely helpful in these types of situations. Early orthodontic treatment also helps children establish proper oral hygiene practices and responsibility at a young age, so that they can carry that through to adulthood. In learning to maintain an expander or partial braces, it makes kids more accountable, so that when they graduate onto Phase Two of their orthodontic journey, they know a little more about what to expect.
Early orthodontic treatment may also reduce the treatment time for Phase Two orthodontics and provides more space for teeth to erupt in the mouth. In some cases, early treatment may also reduce the need for jaw surgery later.
Ensure the success of your child’s orthodontic treatment and get them started early if need be, so they can live life with a spectacular smile.
The team at Charleston Orthodontic Specialists is ready to help you in Mt. Pleasant and throughout the Charleston area. Call (843) 4-BRACES to get started today.