Many people are treated with braces during adolescence to correct problems with alignment. However, many orthodontists recommend interceptive treatment in pre-adolescence to make extensive orthodontic work less necessary.
What is Interceptive Treatment?
This type of treatment can help correct problems as they develop—or even before—rather than waiting to move the permanent teeth after they’ve come in. An orthodontist can evaluate the position of your child’s teeth and the size of his jaw and determine if intervention will be necessary to ensure there’s enough room for all the permanent teeth. X-rays can also show the position of the permanent teeth in the jawbone.
Many orthodontists recommend this type of evaluation well before adolescence. The exact age at which your child should be evaluated depends upon your preference as well as the recommendation of your dentist. An early evaluation and subsequent treatment can reduce the amount of time your child will need to wear braces when the time comes. In some cases, interceptive treatment can eliminate the need for braces altogether.
Types of Interceptive Treatment
One of the most common forms of interceptive treatment is palate expansion. A special appliance is used to widen the palate, creating more room in the upper jaw for the permanent teeth when they arrive. This treatment is often used on pre-adolescents because the palate hasn’t completed its growth yet and is not fused. Widening the palate makes additional room without having to resort to tooth extraction.
Other types of interceptive treatment include:
- Expansion of the lower jaw
- Creating or maintaining space between baby teeth
- Early removal of baby teeth
With the right interceptive treatment, your child might require less extensive orthodontic work later in life. In some cases, braces can even be avoided with the right combination of interceptive treatments. Be sure to ask your dentist when your child should have her first orthodontic evaluation. By implementing interceptive treatment according to your orthodontist’s recommendation, you can reduce the amount of time your child will spend in braces.
Call our office at 972-548-8200 to learn more about interceptive treatment for your child today.