At Changing Smiles Pediatric Dentistry, we offer orthodontic treatment to children of all ages. Early orthodontics has become much more popular in recent years. Why? Treating orthodontic issues at an early age can result in a number of benefits. Above all else, it can help your child maintain a healthy and beautiful smile!
The Importance of Early Intervention
Forty or fifty years ago, the halls of our high schools were filled with teenagers wearing braces. These days, that sight is much less common because children are undergoing orthodontic treatment at an earlier age. According to the American Association of Orthodontists (AAO), your child should receive their first orthodontic evaluation by the time they are seven years old.
By the age of seven, your child should have enough permanent teeth to make a proper assessment. During a consultation, Dr. Meads will be able to identify problems that require early intervention to promote healthier tooth development. We may also determine that treatment is needed, but not until a later date. In some cases, we may even tell you that no treatment is required.
The bottom line: early orthodontics can prevent small issues from becoming major complications. Many orthodontic problems are also easier to treat at an earlier age before the teeth and jaws are done developing. Once development is complete, it becomes much harder to move teeth to their proper alignment.
Common Orthodontic Issues
The goal of orthodontic treatment is to improve the function and aesthetics of your child’s smile. Early treatment can even guide the growth and development of their permanent teeth and jawbone. The orthodontic issues best suited for early treatment include:
Braces and Other Appliances
Most parents are familiar with braces, the most common orthodontic appliance. Conventional braces consist of metal brackets, metal wires, and elastic bands. The brackets are bonded to the front surfaces of the teeth and linked together by the wire, which is held in place by the bands. Throughout treatment the wire is tightened, placing pressure on the teeth until they move to the proper position.
Thanks to technological advancements, braces these days are more discreet and comfortable than ever before. They are also more effective, which can result in faster treatment times. Even still, there may be a brief adjustment period as your child gets used to eating and speaking with their new appliance.
We also offer clear aligner trays, like Invisalign®, as an effective alternative to braces. At the beginning of your child’s treatment, we will take impressions of their upper and lower teeth. These impressions will be used to create a series of clear, plastic aligner trays. Each tray in the series is designed to move the teeth to a slightly better position.
Many children prefer aligner trays because they are virtually invisible. These aesthetically-pleasing trays can save your child from feeling self-conscious about orthodontic treatment.
We also offer several orthodontic treatments designed to correct malocclusions (misaligned bites). In the end, the type of treatment we recommend is dictated by the severity of your child’s misalignments. Talk with Dr. Meads to learn more about our treatment options!
Schedule Your Child’s Consultation
Find out if your child could benefit from early orthodontics! Call (702) 998-2840 to schedule their consultation today!