Orthodontic treatment is a series of processes to move poorly aligned teeth to a desirable position. This improves the appearance, biting position and chewing function. Early evaluation of your child’s problem can help your child get timely and effective treatment.
Orthodontic Treatment for Kids: 7 Signs You Should Watch Out For
Following are the warning signs that your child needs orthodontic treatment:
You need to consider a orthodontic consultation, if your child breathes through his/her mouth. Major changes can occur to your child’s oral health and even to the jaw structure if the problem of mouth breathing is left untreated.
Mouth breathing can lead to crooked teeth, gummy smile, and open bite. Dry cracked lips, bad breath, dry mouth and snoring may indicate that your child breathes through his/her mouth.
If the problem of mouth breathing is due to the problem in your child’s teeth and/or jaw , if your child is unable to close his/her lips may be due to over flared front teeth – then your child needs orthodontic treatment.
2.Overcrowded or crooked teeth
If your child’s permanent teeth are overcrowded or growing in crooked form and your child is bothered about his smile and is complaining of facing discomfort due to this then your child needs orthodontic treatment.
3.Difficulty chewing and speaking
If your child finds any difficulty in chewing or he has to shift the jaw to chew properly or finds any soreness in teeth/gums while chewing then you should take your child for orthodontic treatment.
If your child has misaligned jaw/teeth, he may find difficult to speak. Due to narrow upper jaw also there must be difficulty in speaking as this decrease the space necessary for resonance in speech. Orthodontic treatment may help to cure these situations.
4.Thumb/ Finger sucking
Generally most of the children stops sucking their thumb or finger at the age of 2 and 4 but if your child is continuing the habit of sucking his /her thumb or finger then this is a warning sign for you to notice that your child needs orthodontic treatment.
If your child continue sucking his thumb or finger even when the permanent teeth start growing, this may give comfort to your child but due to this your child’s upper teeth will start sticking out and lower teeth will start getting crowded. This may even cause lipsing like speech problems. So if this is the case then you must take your child for orthodontic consultation.
Crossbites are when upper front teeth fall behind the lower front teeth, the jaw deviates to the side creating improper fit of upper and lower teeth.
If you notice that your child’s front upper teeth are behind lower teeth or the chin is not in centre then your child should take orthodontic treatment.
6.Abnormal tooth loss
Loss of baby teeth at right time is important so that the adult teeth could erupt in appropriate manner. If you notice that your child is losing his/her baby teeth early or late than the normal time then this is a warning sign for you to notice that your needs orthodontic treatment.
While eating if there is shifting of jaw or if the jaw asymmetry is noticeable then you should take your child to an Orthodontist for correct treatment of this problem at right time .
Benefits of early treatment
- Preserves space for the eruption of adult teeth
- Cures speech problems
- Improves jaw growth in a positive manner
- Improve the appearance of teeth
- Harmful oral habits are eliminated
- Treatment time is shortened
So you can also take your child to an Orthodontist at about the age of 5 or 6 to check whether or not your child needs orthodontic treatment.
An early detection of the above warning signs is necessary so that your child gets proper treatment at right time before the problem gets worse and the treatment gets difficult.