Many children require braces in early adolescence in order to correct major problems with the alignment of their teeth. If you see wide spaces or crowding, your child might need orthodontic treatment. Other signs like tooth grinding can also indicate a problem with alignment of the teeth.
Things to Look For to Determine if Your Child Needs Braces
Some symptoms of misalignment of the teeth are fairly obvious. Others are more subtle. If you take your child to the dentist for regular appointments, your dentist should be able to spot some of the issues that can indicate he or she might need braces. He can then refer you to an orthodontist, who can recommend treatment.
If you take your child to the dentist for regular appointments, your dentist should be able to spot some of the issues that can indicate he or she might need braces.
Some signs that your child might need braces include:
- Teeth that are crowded and overlap
- Teeth with wide spaces between them
- Crooked teeth
- Bruxism, or teeth grinding
- Severe over or underbite
All these conditions can be addressed with orthodontic treatment. The type of treatment depends upon the type of problem, your personal preferences, and the recommendation of your orthodontist.
Options for Treating Orthodontic Issues
Your orthodontist can provide information and recommendations regarding the appropriate treatment for your child. Many children will not need any treatment. Some children might need to have their palate enlarged, which makes more room for the teeth as they are coming in. Others might need to have the teeth shifted into position after they have emerged. Teeth are typically treated with metal braces or with Invisalign.
Traditional metal braces, which use rubber bands to move the teeth gradually into proper alignment, are common for children. Many children and adolescents undergo this treatment after their permanent teeth have emerged. Sometimes it’s necessary before all the permanent teeth have arrived in order to be sure there is sufficient room in the mouth. Invisalign is also an increasingly popular option, using nearly invisible plastic trays to realign the teeth. Both treatments can take twelve to twenty-four months or longer, depending upon the severity of the misalignment. To find out what treatment might be best for your child, please contact our skilled orthodontic team to schedule a consultation.