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Do kids really need orthodontics?

Do kids really need orthodontics?

Younger children can sometimes experience issues that can be corrected with orthodontic treatment. Our SmileTown Burnaby dentists discuss how early detection can help your child's orthodontic health. 

You may be surprised to learn that orthodontics can play a role in even young children's oral health. 

Our team at SmileTown Burnaby can conduct an early orthodontic assessment for your child and recommend minor corrective options if required, or refer you to an orthodontist if needed. 

Ideally, issues such as misalignment and other orthodontic problems are diagnosed and treated before they fully develop. This is referred to as interception orthodontics and can help guide children's teeth into their proper positions as they grow - preferable to cing problems later. 

The Key to Successful Treatment: Early Detection 

Previously, orthodontists did not typically recommend orthodontic issues be treated until children reached the ages of 12 to 14, when permanent teeth are already emerging. Dentists also once commonly recommended tooth extraction to create space for the final phase of tooth movement and to correct bite issue. 

However, as orthodontic knowledge has advanced, interception orthodontics has allowed us to treat children at a much earlier age (typically between 7 and 11 years) and leverage a child's continuing growth. 

Similar to many other oral health issues, early detection is key to successful orthodontic treatment outcomes. Our orthodontists can assess any potential orthodontic issues early. If we discover developmental issues that require interception orthodontic treatment, they may involve:

  • Uneven jaw development
  • Teeth crowding 
  • Constricted plate, which causes misalignment of back teeth (also referred to as crossbite)

While still allowing us to expand the jaw to leave space for crowded teeth, reduce the risk of trauma to protruding front teeth and influence jaw growth to improve facial symmetry, this type of treatment also helps avoid the need for tooth extraction. 

While extraction and other invasive treatments may resolve one orthodontic issue, it's also an option that can have unintended negative long-term consequences, such as misalignment. Interceptive treatment can also help reduce treatment time as your child enters their teen years. 

No matter your child's dental issue or orthodontic problem, our team at SmileTown Burnaby can conduct an early evaluation to help determine whether your child may be a candidate for orthodontic treatment. 

We can also help you decide between orthodontic treatment options (which may include interceptive braces, oral appliances or Invisalign First orthodontic aligners), explain the impact they'll have on your child's smile in the short-term and long-term and help you make a well-informed decision. 

Do you have questions about your child's orthodontic health? Perhaps it's time for an assessment. Contact our dentists at SmileTown Burnaby today

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