As the parent of an 11 year old who will soon need braces because of crowding, here is a great list of signs that your child might need braces.
Often, orthodontic treatment is recommended for younger patients because the chances of successful treatment are greater at an early age and it is best to address issues sooner rather than later. Leaving orthodontic problems often results in them becoming more serious and pronounced and many adults who are now choosing to have treatment regret not taking their dentist’s advice at a younger age.
Dentists look out for signs of orthodontic issues, which affect the alignment of the teeth and the bite, from an early age and they may recommend that a child sees a specialist orthodontist if they believe they would benefit from treatments such as Damon Braces. An orthodontist is a dentist who has specialist training in Orthodontics. Examples of orthodontic issues include overbite, underbite, crossbite, crowding, spaces between the teeth and crooked teeth. Sometimes, issues are easy to see, but in other cases, they are more subtle. Here are 5 signs that your child will need braces when they are older:
When the baby teeth start to fall out and the adult teeth come through, you will be able to start building a picture of what your child’s smile will look like and it will become obvious as more and more teeth develop if there is an issue with crowding. If the teeth are overlapping or some are pushing against the tooth next to them, it’s likely that your child will need treatment to make space in the jaw and reposition the teeth. Crowding affects the aesthetic of the smile, but it can also contribute to oral health problems, as it is difficult to clean the teeth properly.
2. Protruding front teeth
The front teeth are among the first adult teeth to erupt and you can usually tell from a fairly early age if the teeth are going to protrude over the bottom teeth. Some people have larger front teeth than others and often this is not an issue, but if the teeth are very large and they sit at an angle, this may be cause for concern and orthodontic treatment may be recommended. This problem is known as overjet and it can usually be treated very effectively with braces.
3. Difficulty eating
If your child complains when they eat or is reluctant to chew food, this may indicate an orthodontic problem. Misalignment of the teeth can make eating more difficult. If you have concerns, arrange to see your dentist and they can have a look at the child’s teeth. Often, when the teeth are pushing through and there is a mixed dentition (a mixture of adult and baby teeth), there may be temporary problems, which are resolved once all the first teeth have fallen out and the adult teeth have developed fully.
4. Issues with the bite
The bite is a term used to describe the way the top and bottom sets of teeth fit together when the jaw is closed and relaxed. In a normal bite, the top teeth stick out just further than the bottom teeth and the back teeth sit together without any gaps. If the bottom jaw protrudes, this causes the bottom teeth to stick out further than the top teeth and this is known as underbite. If the top teeth protrude much further than the bottom teeth, this is known as an overbite. Look out for gaps in your child’s bite when they close their teeth.
5. Protruding jaw or abnormally sized jaw
If the jaw protrudes further than normal or the jaw is small or large in relation to the face, this may be an indicator of potential orthodontic problems in the future. If the teeth haven’t developed yet, your dentist will probably wait to see what happens when the baby teeth are lost and replaced with adult teeth before making a decision about orthodontic treatment. Issues with the jaw can affect the bite and may also contribute to spaces between the teeth or crowding. Orthodontic treatment can usually correct issues with alignment of the teeth, but surgery may be required in more severe cases when the position of the jaw needs to be adjusted.
Any tips you would add?