Proper dental care plays a major role in an individual’s life. Natural teeth are one of the most important things in a human’s body since they cannot be easily replaced. Proper dental care requires regular dental checkups, brushing and cleaning teeth and proper care of diet. Children from a young age are required to consume healthy food, rich in calcium and vitamins, as it helps sustain their health.
To begin with, kids can need braces for any number of reasons namely, for having crooked, overlapping or overcrowded teeth, or even malocclusion. Malocclusion is when there’s a difference in the sizes of the top and bottom jaws which causes an issue known an overbite and an underbite. An overbite occurs when the upper jaw is bigger than the lower jaw, whereas an underbite occurs when the lower jaw is bigger than the upper jaw.
However, it is not only limited to these problems. Sometimes tooth and jaw problems can be caused by losing baby teeth too soon by accidents or habits like thumb sucking. But often they’re inherited – if parents have dental issues, there is a possibility that children might have it too.
One misconception about braces is that it is ideal for pre-teens and teenagers; however, many sources such as the American Association of Orthodontics (AAO) recommends that children should visit the orthodontist no later than age 7. There are several benefits of going to the orthodontist at an earlier age as it allows oral problems to be identified earlier which helps the long term treatment to be properly conducted. In addition, at a younger age, teeth can be more easily guided for braces, reducing the time they have to be worn as the body is in its developing phase.
There are typically 2 phases of orthodontic treatment. Firstly, phase I, also known as, early intervention treatment, starts before all the permanent teeth have grown in, often when the child is 6 to 10 years old. This treatment is usually recommended to make more space for developing teeth and correct oral problems, such as overbites and crossbites. The baby teeth actually play an important role in clearing the path for the permanent teeth as well as enabling your child to eat, speak, and breathe comfortably. This step usually requires limited dental equipment such as partial braces.
Whereas, phase 2, known as comprehensive treatment, begins when the child is older – aged 11 to 15 – when all their permanent teeth have grown in. This treatment usually involves full braces. During this age, most of the permanent teeth have erupted and are in place which allows easy identification of crooked teeth, gaps, and bad bites. Ideally, this is when most parents decide to seek orthodontic treatment as these problems do not diminish over time. Additionally, since children are currently developing during this age frame, orthodontists can take advantage of these growth spurts to help shape the bite and teeth correctly.
If you’re looking for an Orthodontist in Canby or Lake Oswego, we invite you to come in for a FREE CONSULTATION. Call Today.