What is the difference between early orthodontic treatment and regular orthodontic treatment, and why might my child need early treatment? How will early treatment benefit my child in the long run?
The aim of Early Orthodontic Treatment, otherwise known as Dentofacial Orthopaedics or Phase One, is to help correct abnormal growth of the jaw and certain bite problems. Early treatment also creates room for permanent teeth (usually via expanders) where there is currently no room, help preventing the need for extractions and more complicated treatment in the future. Early treatment typically begins around age seven or eight
Why would you do two phases of treatment or want to treat my child earlier? There is a valid question that is often asked which relates to why do we sometimes do early treatment or Phase One when we know there is going to be treatment needed at an older age. The answer is that Phase One involves the manipulation of bone growth in the jaws that cannot be done at an older age.
Orthodontic problems such as crowding of the teeth, too much space between the teeth, jaw growth problems, protruding teeth, and bad bites can be inherited or caused by injury to the mouth, early or late loss of baby teeth, or thumb-sucking habits.
Most children lose all their baby teeth by age 13, and by the end of their teen years, the jaw bones will harden and stop growing. Receiving early orthodontic treatment as a child can help prevent the need for more complicated or invasive orthodontic procedures when they are older.
How to tell if your child may need early orthodontic treatment:
Early or late loss of baby teeth (your child should typically start losing teeth around age five, and will have all permanent teeth around age 13)
Difficulty chewing and/or biting
Your child continues sucking his or her thumb after age five
Protruding teeth (the top teeth and the bottom teeth extend away from each other)
Teeth that don't come together in a normal manner or even at all
Shifting of the jaw when your child opens or closes his or her mouth (crossbites)
If your child is between the ages of seven and eight or shows signs of needing orthodontic care, please contact us here at Lilli Pilli Dental. Our team will provide your child with an initial exam, and discuss with you the best steps to take toward caring for your child's smile.
lILLI Pilli Dental practice 487 Port Hacking Road Caringbah South NSW 2229