When children have crooked teeth, it can dramatically affect their smile and confidence. Children with irregular bites often have difficulty chewing food properly and may suffer from TMJ disorder or jaw pain. Additionally, crooked teeth are more difficult to clean and may cause cavities. Crooked teeth can also make your child’s speech difficult to understand, impacting his social interactions at school.
The good news is early orthodontics can help address all of these concerns. Early treatment takes less time than adult braces because the mouth is still developing, and the bones are more pliable. Typically the orthodontist at Knoxville Orthodontics, can correct bite problems by guiding the growth of the jawbones. This makes maintaining proper alignment throughout the child’s life easier by preventing permanent tooth misalignment.
Types of Orthodontic Problems in Children
- Malocclusion is a misalignment of the upper and lower teeth when the jaws are closed. It can include overbites, underbites, crossbites, and open bites.
- Crowding occurs when there is not enough space in the mouth for all the teeth to come in properly, causing the teeth to overlap and become crooked.
- Spacing is the opposite of crowding, where there is too much space between the teeth, causing gaps or spaces.
- Impacted teeth are when a tooth fails to emerge or fully develop and remains hidden beneath the gum line.
- Jaw growth problems can include a narrow or underdeveloped upper jaw, an overgrown or undergrown lower jaw, or a misalignment between the two.
The Advantages of Early Orthodontics
Early orthodontic treatment is much less complicated than orthodontic care during adulthood when the teeth and jaws are set in place and cannot be changed without surgery. While treatment in early childhood is typically only done for structural reasons, such as correcting an overbite or an underbite, it can also help teens and adults by improving the appearance of their smiles.
Another advantage of early orthodontics is that children are not self-conscious about wearing braces when their peers are still undergoing growth and development. As the primary concern about orthodontic treatment is its appearance, patients can focus on getting healthy, straight teeth rather than hiding their smiles behind metal wires and brackets. Many young patients are so excited about having a perfect smile that they proudly wear their elastics! By undergoing orthodontic treatment early on, you may also avoid more serious and costly oral health problems down the road. Teeth that are properly aligned are easier to keep clean because they can be thoroughly brushed and flossed. They can become more vulnerable to tooth decay, gum disease, and tooth loss if they are not well-aligned. Early orthodontic treatment patients are less likely to require tooth extractions or complex surgical procedures later in life.
Early diagnosis and treatment of dental problems are essential to prevent more serious orthodontic problems from developing later on and to ensure that a child's teeth and jaws develop correctly. For the best dental care, visit the best dentist in Knoxville, TN - Knoxville Orthodontics at one of our three locations. or give us a call for the best dental care.