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How to Tell When it's Time to Take Your Child to an Orthodontist in Broomfield


December 20, 2017

It can be difficult for parents to know when their child is in need of orthodontic services. A child’s teeth can cause headaches for both the child and their parents, and it is important to stay informed about the appropriate times to bring your child to see your local orthodontist in Broomfield.

The American Association of Orthodontist suggests that parents bring their child to the orthodontist by age 7. Prior to the age of seven, a child may have orthodontic issues that need to be looked at, but the teeth are not developed enough to address them. It is important to have your child’s teeth looked at during the appropriate stage of development, which is why 7 years old is the recommended age level.

Orthodontic procedures are done to correct issues with crowded or crooked teeth as well as improperly positioned jaws. These are issues that can cause complications with how the teeth develop, and can create additional concerns if not properly addressed.

The benefits for orthodontic procedures are wide-ranging and include reducing the risk for tooth and gum disease, having a straighter smile, and solving issues with speaking or chewing, as well as having a sore jaw. Crooked teeth are not only an eyesore, but they can also lead to further oral health problems that require more serious attention.

The most frequent orthodontic issue people face is malocclusion, which means a person has a bad bite.  This can be due to a genetic problem, but can also result from thumb or finger sucking, abnormal swallowing, mouth-breathing, and poor dental hygiene. Issues such as injury, early or late loss of baby teeth, and baby defects can also contribute to orthodontic issues.

There are a variety of signs to look for regarding your child’s oral health, specifically issues relating to the bite that can indicate the need for orthodontic procedures. These can include having an overbite, which is when front teeth sit too far forward over the top of a person’s bottom teeth as well as having an underbite, where the lower teeth are too far forward. If your child’s teeth are crowded or have gaps or open spaces, this can indicate they are a candidate for orthodontic procedures.

Benefits of early treatment

As stated earlier, addressing teeth and jaw issues as early as possible is important factor to consider if you are thinking about whether orthodontic action is needed. The sooner a problem is corrected, the less likely your child will have complications to their teeth and jaw later in life. Younger people have the advantage of being able to heal faster and often with less pain than older adults. This is the saw reason dentists recommend having your wisdom teeth removed at an early age, as recovery time and pain tend to increase as the jaw ages.

It is essential to consult with your dentist and orthodontist about what best fits your child's needs. Some issues are can be addressed earlier in the development of your teeth, as particular procedures can be done while baby teeth are present. Depending on the condition of your child’s teeth, an orthodontist may recommend they receive treatment upon all of their baby teeth falling out. Even if your child does not require any type of procedure, a visit to your local Broomfield orthodontist can be a beneficial. A visit can serve your child’s dental health well, as problems can be detected early on. It is always best to detect issues at an early on-set, as the total treatment time can increase the longer an issue is left untreated.

No mouth is the same, and as a result it no treatment plan will likely be the same. Prentice Orthodontics is happy to discuss these options with you, and are driven to deliver a personalized plan that efficiently meets your treatment needs.

Common Corrective Procedures

If your child requires an orthodontic procedure, it is important to be aware of the various procedures that exist. The most widely known orthodontic procedure is when braces are required. These are fixed appliances consisting of metal wires, brackets, and bands that are attached to a patient’s teeth. Bands are used as anchors to the teeth, while the brackets are typically bonded to the front of the teeth. Arch wires work their way through the bands and are connected to the bands. These wires can be tightened and adjusted, as needed, and by doing so they slowly move the teeth into the desired and correct position.

Prentice Orthodontics offers a variety of solutions for your child if they require braces, and we are happy to speak with you regarding your options.

Another common procedure is when a special fixed appliance is needed to remediate a particular issue, such as thumb-sucking. Bands can be attached to the teeth, and certain models can make eating an uncomfortable chore, which means they should only be utilized as a last resort.

Your child may require an appliance that is not fixed, which means the device can be removed as needed. An aligners is one such device, which is used to straighten and correct teeth without the need for metal braces and wires. This is an option that is available to teenagers and adults. Lip and cheek bumpers are another removable device used in the treatment process. The cheek and lips can sometimes exert excessive pressure on teeth, and bumpers are used to alleviate this pressure.

Another common removable device is a retainer. These are worn on the roof of the mouth as a way to ensure that teeth don’t shift back to their original position, and are usually given after a corrective procedure, such as braces, are complete.

Prior to receiving treatment, it is important of become aware of what procedures may be required for your child’s unique situation. If you are in the areas of Broomfield, Lafayette, Superior, Erie, Brighton, Westminster, and Thornton and are in need of orthodontic services, call Prentice Orthodontics today at 303-468-7722, our experienced staff can answer questions regarding which services would be best for your child and set up an appointment.