Early Orthodontic Treatment Phase 1
Some children can benefit enormously from an early phase of orthodontic treatment. At this age, teeth and jaws are still growing, so early treatment is aimed at utilizing appliances that direct the growth relationship of the upper and lower jaws. Thus, a good foundation can be established, providing adequate room for eruption of all permanent teeth. This early, interceptive correction may prevent later removal of permanent teeth to correct overcrowding and/or surgical procedures to align the upper and lower jaws. Leaving such condition untreated until all permanent teeth erupt could result in a severe jaw discrepancy to achieve an ideal result with braces. To learn more please call us at 405-330-9911 or visit the American Associations of Orthodontists website.
Why Early Orthodontics
The American Association of Orthodontists recommends an orthodontic check-up no later than age 7. This may seem early for a visit. At this age, the front teeth have begun to erupt and problems can be detected.
Conditions Requiring Early Treatment
- Underbites – when the lower front teeth are ahead of the upper front teeth
- Crossbites – when the jaw shifts to one side
- Very crowded teeth
- Excessively spaced teeth
- Extra or missing teeth
- Teeth that meet abnormally, or don’t meet at all
- Thumb-, finger-, or pacifier- sucking that is affecting the teeth or jaw growth
Early orthodontic treatment can take many forms. The orthodontist could prescribe a fixed or removable “appliance” – a device used to move teeth, change the position of the jaw, or hold teeth in place in order to bring desirable changes. Sometimes no appliances are necessary. Rather, removal of some baby teeth may help the permanent teeth erupt better. The extractions will be timed to take the best advantage of a patient’s growth and development.
Regardless of how treatment goals are reached, the bottom line is that some orthodontic problems may be easier to correct if they are found and treated early. Waiting until all the permanent teeth have come in, or until facial growth is nearly complete, may make correction of some problems more difficult.
Types of Treatment
The Herbst Appliance is an orthodontic device that corrects an overbite by encouraging the lower jaw to catch up in growth.
D Gainer, also known as a limited fixed appliance is a combination of Damon orthodontic brackets placed on permanent front teeth and the first permanent molars.
The Nitanium Expander helps correct molar rotations while expanding the arch at the same time.
The Schwartz Appliance is a removable tool that also helps correct narrow arches.