Why Does My Young Child Need an Appointment?
Was your young child referred to our office by your dentist and you are curious as to why? For many adults today, the association when thinking about orthodontic treatment would most likely have you thinking of a teenager. Therefore, you might be surprised when your seven or eight-year-old child is recommended to visit our office for a consultation. With continuing education, modern dental practices, and updated technology, we have learned that it is most beneficial for children around the age of seven to be evaluated for orthodontic treatment.
Benefits of Early Orthodontic Treatment
The main goal of early orthodontic treatment is not to straighten the teeth, which might be a surprising fact to learn. It is actually to inspect and correct any jaw issues that may be present. Using X-rays, models of the teeth, and photographs, we are able to determine if the jaw is too wide or narrow or if the child is experiencing bite issues. Fixing issues with the jaw early can assist our team to:
- Create space to give the permanent teeth room to grow in properly
- Avoid having to remove permanent teeth at a later age
- Improve minor speech problems
- Help to avoid impacted teeth
- Coordinate the width between the upper and lower arches
After the evaluation is complete, we determine if treatment or hardware is needed. This might be in the form of a palate expander which is used to gradually widen the area of the upper jaw. Once the jaw is adjusted to the desired position, treatment then becomes a waiting game. Your child may go years before the second phase of treatment, traditional braces, are needed. We will continue to monitor the teeth every six months during the supervision period.
If you are located in the Southfield, MI area and have been referred to our practice or you have a child in need of an orthodontic evaluation call our office to schedule a consultation today. We look forward to meeting you soon!