Developing a ‘bad bite’ or malocclusion can be recognized as early as 2-3 years old. Often, early steps can be taken to reduce the need for major orthodontic treatment at a later age. At Growing Smiles, when Dr. Meggan checks your child’s mouth she is checking for more than just decay.
Dr. Meggan’s preventative approach includes:
- Preserving space for unerupted permanent teeth
- Creating room for crowded, erupting teeth
- Creating facial symmetry through influencing jaw growth
- Reducing the risk of trauma to protruding front teeth
Interceptive orthodontics may prevent the development of improper positioning of the teeth or jaws, or reduce its severity, therefore making future orthodontic treatment less complicated and more successful. Advantages of early treatment include normal future growth and development, improvement of facial appearance, self-esteem, and may avoid or decrease the possibility for the extraction of your child’s teeth when they are older.
The American Association of Orthodontists recommends that the initial orthodontic evaluation should occur at the first sign of orthodontic problems or no later than age 7. At this early age, orthodontic treatment may not be necessary, but vigilant examination and prudent intervention can help guide growth and development. Dr. Meggan may recommend an early referral to a local orthodontist and will help facilitate preventative care during the orthodontic treatment for your child.