When should a child see an orthodontist?
The American Association of Orthodontics (AAO) recommends having a child be seen by an orthodontist at the age of 7, or if one is developing.
What can your child expect at the first exam?
The first exam is very easy and simple. Our staff will take a panoramic and cephlomeric x-ray to examine both jaws, all teeth - both erupted and unerupted - and determine the growth potential. Then, a set of photos will be taken. Finally, a quick oral clinic exam by Dr. Jean-Mary will be completed to finalize the diagnosis of your child's oral health. Treatment options will be presented if treatment is needed.
Why is Orthodontics important?
Orthodontic problems such as misaligned teeth, difficulty chewing, or shifting jaws, should be taken seriously. If left untreated, problems will occur down the line like tooth decay, gum disease, and abnormal wearing of tooth enamel.
Benefits to orthodontic treatment include:
• Ensure proper function of teeth
• Create a healthy, attractive smile and facial structure
• Maintain a good bite, making it easier to chew and speak
• Avoid tooth decay/loss by making them easier to clean
Signs Your Child May Need Orthodontic Care
• Early or Late Loss of Baby Teeth
Although there are ranges of normal variation, losing baby teeth too early or too late can treate problems with the succeeding permanent teeth.
• Difficult Chewing or Biting
• Mouth Breathing
Although orthodontists cannot correct mouth breathing, there are orthodontic problems that can develop as a result of this pattern of breathing which can be addressed by our orthodontist.
• Jaw Shifting/Cheek Biting
Shifting of the lower jaw due to a bite problem can lead to jaw pain and other dental consequences. If your child is constantly biting their cheeks, they may have a cross bite that is preventing normal chewing.
• Metal braces
• Ceramic braces
• Palatal expanders
• Space maintainers
• Functional appliances
• Orthognatic surgery
*All information has been adapted from the American Association of Orthodontics, please visit aaoinfo.org for more information.