Pediatric Health and Orthodontics

The Importance of Early Intervention

When it comes to pediatric orthodontics, we firmly believe that the earlier the treatment, the better. Early discovery makes it possible to treat smile and bite issues before bones have stopped growing.

We aren’t the only ones who are emphasizing the importance of early treatment: The American Association of Orthodontists recommends that children receive an orthodontic evaluation no later than age seven.

Keeping an Eye on Orthodontic Development

If your children already come to us for their regular care, you can be sure that we are also keeping an eye on their orthodontic development. If not, please be sure to check for the following:

  • Loss of baby teeth earlier or later than usual
  • Mouth breathing
  • Thumb sucking
  • Finger sucking
  • Difficulty biting or chewing
  • Crowded teeth
  • Top teeth protruding over bottom teeth
  • Bottom teeth overlapping top teeth
  • Crowded or overly gapped teeth
  • Teeth that do not meet properly (look to see if the spaces between the front teeth line up)

Early treatment may help your child avoid surgery or other serious corrections. In some cases, we can get results that may not be possible once your child has finished growing.

Who is Early Intervention Orthodontics for?

Early Intervention is treatment for children (usually ages 6-10) who are displaying developmental problems that need to be corrected to avoid future problems. Some common reasons for early intervention are:

  • Congenital dental abnormalities such as missing, transposed or malformed teeth
  • Detrimental habits such as tongue thrust or thumb/finger sucking
  • Functional problems such as cross bites, deep bites and asymmetries
  • Space maintenance to create or hold space for a permanent tooth when the baby tooth is lost too early.

Does My Child Need an Expander?

If the upper jaw is too narrow, we will create a custom palatal expander. A palatal expander is an oral appliance worn to widen the upper jaw so that the upper and lower teeth fit together properly.

Remember, starting early is better and will give your child more lasting results. Call us today for more information.