Early treatment is designed to reduce the severity of the developing orthodontic problem.
Early treatment may reduce the complexity and cost of the subsequent treatment as well as allowing a better treatment outcome.
Children’s jaws are still soft and pliable, meaning orthodontic issues can be fixed much easier than in adults.
Early intervention orthodontics is aimed at correcting cross bites where the top teeth are inside the lower teeth, the top jaws are narrow, the lower jaws are small or space needs to be preserved so that the second teeth can erupt into the best possible positions. This type of orthodontic treatment is very predictable and effective in growing adolescent patients.
How can early treatment benefit my child?
At AAA Orthodontics in Albany Creek and Strathpine, we would recommend bringing your child in when they are around 7 or 8 years of age.
By performing an early orthodontic assessment, Dr Peter McMahon can help effectively prevent or reduce the severity of issues later in life and may even help your child avoid the need for braces!
Children respond very well to early intervention orthodontics as their jaws are still developing and are easily manipulated into the proper positioning.
This can minimise orthodontic work later on, as well as allow for the proper development of the teeth, jaws and speech.
Indications your child may require orthodontic help
There are many signs that your child may need orthodontic help, which may include:
- Early or late loss of baby teeth
- Protruding front teeth
- Crowded teeth
- Biting or chewing issues
- Teeth do not meet together properly
- Crossbites or other common issues
- Breathing through the mouth
- Speech impediment
Early orthodontic treatment options:
Early treatment may include the use of removable plates, fixed expansion appliances or functional appliances to correct jaw discrepancies.
Dr Peter McMahon will be able to discuss what is best for your child during your consultation.
Early Orthodontic Treatment FAQs
The American Association of Orthodontists recommends an initial review at age seven. If a developing orthodontic problem is observed at an early age, it allows for interceptive treatment which may greatly reduce the extent of later treatment.
When the baby molar teeth are lost the permanent teeth at the back usually move forwards. The space for the front teeth reduces after age six. This is why it is important to bring your child in for an assessment at around seven years of age, so we can identify any issues early.
Not necessarily. Some problems need early treatment to prevent a more severe problem developing in the future. Early or Stage One treatment can greatly improve the dental appearance during the socially important years. Aligning the smile properly can also help improve speech and jaw function for a proper bite.
Apart from being used to bite and chew food, milk teeth in children also play another critical role. They make space in the jaw for the permanent teeth when they are ready to erupt. The natural loss of milk teeth follows a biological schedule and will fall out at set age/time intervals that vary from person to person. Milk tooth extractions become necessary when:
- There is tooth decay, resulting in pain and infection;
- The milk teeth are too big for the mouth and are causing problems;
- There is overcrowding;
- The milk teeth haven’t fallen out soon enough, which can trigger an orthodontic problem.