No kid wants to start wearing braces earlier than necessary, but sometimes early braces for kids – known as interceptive orthodontics – help a child avoid lengthier orthodontic treatment in the future. There are plenty of appliances and mechanisms that are used to improve the alignment of a kid’s teeth now and for the future. It’s up to your Woodinville orthodontist to determine what’s best for your child’s unique dental health.
What Is Interceptive Orthodontics?
You may think there isn’t much to be done in your kid’s crazy-looking mouth, especially if they’re living with a collection of giant permanent teeth and tiny baby teeth. But there are plenty of orthodontic matters that can be addressed for your young child, even if they’re still holding on to some baby teeth.
Interceptive or Phase 1 orthodontics correct immediate alignment problems and can minimize or eliminate problems that may become obvious in adolescence. The goal of early braces is to guide the development of a child’s jaw and greatly improve the outcome of any future orthodontic treatment
How Do I Know If My Kid Needs Early Braces?
Every child should be evaluated by an orthodontist by the age of 7 or 8 to review teeth positioning, bite alignment, and jaw growth. After a good look at your child’s mouth, your Woodinville orthodontist will make a recommendation for interceptive orthodontics – or not. Orthognathic jaw surgery may also be discussed for severe growth problems.
Here are just some reasons kids qualify for interceptive orthodontics:
- Overbite or underbite
- Protruding front teeth
- Thumb sucking habit
- Difficulty biting and chewing
- Mouth breathing
- Jaw deformity
Just because your child’s teeth may be erupting in a seemingly crazy way now doesn’t automatically indicate that they need interceptive orthodontics or will need braces in the future. Your child is growing all the time and some teeth can find their way into alignment. For kids whose teeth aren’t so certain about their destination, early braces can be a major help.
What Kind of Early Braces Does My Child Need?
Every kid is different, and their orthodontic needs will vary too. They may be a good candidate for Phase 1 orthodontics and can include orthodontic appliances like expanders, space maintainers, Carriere distalizers, and tongue cribs.
It’s true – your elementary school-aged child could benefit from braces. While this may seem akin to torture for a little kid, you’re doing them a favor by intervening early and potentially setting them up for easier, faster, less complicated (and less costly) braces when they’re teens.
Childhood is a high-growth period. This time offers an excellent opportunity for your orthodontist to address current issues to influence the future. If it’s time for your child to have their first orthodontic evaluation or you’re concerned about the development of their jaw and mouth, contact Soleil Orthodontics. Schedule your consultation with orthodontist Dr. Soleil Roberts in Woodinville, Washington.