Orthodontic Treatment In Children
Some children need orthodontic treatment at younger age. Tackling the problem in young age can prevent progression of the condition. This can be done through preventive and interceptive orthodontics.
What is preventive orthodontics?
The orthodontic procedures in which performed to prevent development of the problem.
What is interceptive orthodontics?
Orthodontic treatments that is done after occurrence of the problem. This procedure corrects orthodontic problems or can prevent progression of the orthodontic condition.
Preventive and interceptive orthodontics are performed in growing children.
What conditions can lead to orthodontic problems in children?
Orthodontic conditions are either genetic or related to local factors and can either affect the teeth or jaw bones.
What conditions can lead to orthodontic problems in children
- Dental caries
- Size of teeth in relation to the jaw size. This means either big teeth and small jaw size or vice versa.
- Pattern of teeth eruption
- Extraction of primary teeth (baby teeth) long time before eruption of the permanent one without maintaining the space with space maintainer that leads to drifting of the teeth to the extraction area.
- Presence of missing or extra teeth
- Oral habits such as: thumb or finger sucking, prolonged use ofpacifier, abnormal swallowing, lip biting, tongue sucking, placing tongue between the teeth while swallowing (tongue thrusting).
- Mouth breathing and nasal polyps
- Excessive growth of the upper jaw (maxillary porgnathism)
- Excessive growth of the lower jaw (Mandibular porgnathism
When the child should have their first orthodontic consultation?
Some orthodontic conditions such as excessive growth of the lower jaw require early orthodontic consultation as early as 4-6 years of age.
For other orthodontic conditions it is advisable to have orthodontic consultation at 7 years of age.
What type of orthodontic treatment could be provided for the children?
Both fixed and removable appliances can be used in orthodontic treatment for children. There are,variety of appliances indicated for each condition. Some conditions require use of functional appliances.
What is a removable appliance?
Those are appliances that can be removed by the patient and place it back. These appliances are used in children to correct teeth position
What is a functional appliance?
Those are appliances that are used to correct the jaw position in growing children. These appliances use forces of the jaw muscles to correct the jawbone growth to reach proper jaw relationship.
What should be taken in consideration while the child is undergoing orthodontic treatment?
It is very important to follow the orthodontist instruction during orthodontic treatment. The following points are very important:
- Good oral hygiene if mandatory during the treatment. This include very good cleaning of the teeth and brackets. Brushing two minutes with fluoridated toothpaste twice a day and use of Fluoride mouthwash. You can get the orthodontic kit from the pharmacy or supermarket (pic)
- You should avoid eating hard food. Hard food such as nuts can cause breakage of the brackets.
- It is very important to avoid sugary and sticky food because they can break the brackets.
- Avoid savor and fizzy drinks during orthodontic treatment
- Regular visit to dentist for dental check up is very important during the orthodontic treatment