How Do I Know if My Child Needs Orthodontic Treatment?

How Do I Know if My Child Needs Orthodontic Treatment?

As a parent, every milestone with your child is exciting. When little chicklet baby teeth replace a gummy grin, it may make you smile equally as much. Over the years, those baby teeth give way to permanent ones, and suddenly what was such a cute grin is full of holes and crooked teeth.

Is there a way to plan for orthodontic treatment? While you believe the misplaced teeth may be pushed into place once all the missing spaces are filled in, it may just be wishful thinking. There are some signs that you may want to up your orthodontic coverage through your insurance company. Take a look at some of the indications that you may have a teen sporting a silver grin before too long.

Thumb Sucking

One of the causes of misshapen teeth is thumb sucking. While the practice is common in babies for soothing, it may be a tough habit to break. Most children stop using a pacifier or a thumb to self-soothe around four years old. If your child has a more difficult time getting out of the habit and continues the practice into elementary school, it may lead to the crooked smile and incorrect bite pattern, both of which necessitate braces to fix.

Losing Baby Teeth Early or Late

Some kids seem to reach milestones quicker, while others may seem never to get there. If you have a child on one of those extreme ends when it comes to losing baby teeth, you may be in for orthodontic work. Children who lose teeth too soon may not give adequate support for permanent teeth to grow in. Likewise, losing teeth too late may be an indicator that there is a developmental issue with the mouth, which could signal a problem with alignment.

Too Many Teeth

If your child’s smile looks like it can’t fit one more tooth, yet you know there are more to come, then there is a crowding issue. When the jaw is narrow, it can be hard to accommodate all the teeth. This results in overlapping teeth, bite problems and even pain. In some situations, teeth may need extracting before orthodontic work beginning.

The Dentist Knows Best

Taking your child to regular dental checkups will help you know if braces will be necessary. The dentist typically uses annual X-rays to keep track of tooth development and bite problems. In some instances, your child may be referred to an orthodontist before all the baby teeth have fallen out. There are some devices that an orthodontist may be able to use to help correct some issues before braces go on.

If you want to prepare for orthodontics, it’s a good idea to speak to the dentist or make an appointment with a local orthodontist, like an orthodontist in San Clemente, CA, today.

Thank you to the experts at John Redmond Orthodontics for their expertise in orthodontics as part of an overall health plan.