It is common to see children in their teens undergoing orthodontic treatment, but did you know that children as young as 4 or 5 can benefit from it?
Why would my child need early intervention orthodontics?
It is best to begin orthodontic treatment when the teeth are still developing and the jaw is not fully grown. A dentist at this time can address certain problems before they become more of an issue in later years. Because the bones are still growing it is an ideal time to evaluate a child to determine the treatment that can start now, and establish a future treatment plan. Dr. Matthew Siebel at Coburg Dental Group has undertaken extended training under world-renowned Orthodontist Dr. Derek Mahoney to offer our patients this modern approach to orthodontic treatment.
8 signs that your child may benefit from seeing an orthodontist at an early age:
- Early, late or irregular loss of baby teeth
- Difficulty in chewing or biting
- Mouth breathing and/or snoring
- Protruding teeth
- Thumb sucking beyond the age of 4
- Underbite or overbite
- Crowded, crooked or misplaced teeth
- Jaws and teeth that are out of proportion to the rest of the face
- Past history of tongue tie and/or lip tie
- A family member has had orthodontic treatment
Modern technology means improved look braces
If you go back a few decades there were many metal smiles as children had fixed heavy braces. Technology has evolved and manufacturers today are attempting to make metal braces more appealing to children. This can be through ‘personalising’ the elastics and generally being more comfortable and less visible. It is now very common to see children with metal braces that people barely notice.
There is also the option of using ‘invisible braces’ if you have a very self-conscious teen. This involves wearing clear plastic aligners which are removed when eating. The fact they are removable means you can eat, drink, brush and floss more naturally. They do need to be worn approximately 22 hours a day so the wearer does need to be very diligent in making sure they put them in.
Your dentist will be able to advise which option works best for your children. If you are not sure if your child needs orthodontic treatment, it is best to arrange an appointment with Dr. Siebel by calling 9386 1805. It’s better to be too early than too late.