Early orthodontic treatment can help to ensure the healthy development of your child’s teeth and jaw.

It can be difficult to know if your child is showing the signs of an orthodontic problem when they are very young. For this reason, it is generally recommended that you take your child to see an orthodontist for an early assessment at around the age of seven years old. In most cases, if an issue is identified early, it can be effectively resolved.

In fact, with the right intervention, it is often possible to simplify or prevent the need for orthodontic treatment later in life. So, what issues can affect your child’s smile? Read on to find out more about some of the most common orthodontic problems in children, and what warning signs to look out for…

1. Crowded teeth

Crowding is a very common issue and occurs when there is simply not enough space in the jaw for all the teeth to fit properly. In some cases, a child’s jaw may be too small, while it is also possible for the teeth to be abnormally big.

Crowded teeth can lead to numerous problems, including impacted teeth that don’t fully erupt through the gums; wear and tear of the teeth; and poor oral hygiene caused by trapped bacteria and the build-up of plaque.

2. Abnormal eruptions

An abnormal eruption occurs when a tooth erupts through the gum in the incorrect place. If the tooth is unable to properly emerge, the issue can usually be resolved with the help of a simple surgical procedure. During the procedure, your child’s orthodontist will carefully uncover the tooth. In some cases, the tooth may need to be extracted to make room for the permanent adult teeth.

3. Bite-related problems

Some of the most common bite-related problems that can affect children include crossbites; underbites; overbites; and open bites.

A crossbite usually occurs when the upper and lower jaws are misaligned and the child’s upper teeth bite inside their lower teeth. An underbite, on the other hand, occurs when the lower front teeth extend past the upper front teeth.

An overbite refers to a case in which a child’s upper front teeth bite over the lower teeth; while an open bite occurs when the front upper and lower teeth are angled outwards and don’t touch even when the mouth is shut.

4. Too much space in the mouth

Some children have too much space in their mouth when their teeth are particularly small in relation to the size of their jaw. The issue can also occur when one or multiple teeth don’t ever erupt, or when teeth are lost as the result of oral disease or trauma.

When there is too much space in the mouth, several problems can occur. For example, if there is too much space between the teeth, it is possible for bacteria and food particles to become stuck, which can lead to gum disease and tooth decay over time.

How can we help?

At South Yarra Orthodontics, we understand that early treatment can often go a long way in simplifying or preventing orthodontic treatment in the future. It can also be helpful in addressing a problem that may be causing damage to the teeth, or which is affecting your child’s normal growth and development.

For these reasons, the team at South Yarra Orthodontics offers early treatment for young children. This often involves monitoring the growth and development of your child’s jaws and dentition, and also sometimes includes extractions; placement of braces; the use of space holding, functional or passive appliances; and the use of growth modifying appliances.

Some of the treatments that we may recommend for your child include partial braces; headgear; lingual arches; and maxillary expanders.

To find out more about the early orthodontic treatment that we provide at South Yarra Orthodontics, please have a look here.

If you would like to come in and see us, please don’t hesitate to get in touch to arrange an appointment or give us a call on (03) 9131 1999.