Between the ages of 11 and 15 is the most common time for orthodontic treatment, and for good reasons. By 12, most if not all of the permanent teeth have erupted and are in place, crowding, spacing and malocclusion can easily be detected. These problems will hardly ever correct themselves, so this is when most parents decide to seek orthodontic treatment.
This is also a good time for orthodontic treatment because many negative associations of braces are not present. Many children in this age range undergo orthodontic treatment, therefore it is more socially accepted by peers.
Besides the benefits of fitting in with their friends, children at this age are growing rapidly and orthodontists can take advantage of these growth spurts to help shape the bite and teeth correctly. Children at this age have high metabolisms, which can help shorten overall treatment time and reduce the discomfort of orthodontic treatment.
Did you know that The American Association of Orthodontics (AAO) recommends that children receive an orthodontic screening by 7 years old? A screening enables an orthodontist to detect any potential issues or problems that may need to be treated. The earlier an orthodontic problem is detected the easier it is to correct.
Here at Carter Orthodontics, we treat adolescents with a variety of options when it comes to their braces. Some options include:
Early detection of a problematic orthodontic issue allows our orthodontists, the opportunity to treat there patients while his or her jaws are still growing and allows an opportunity to help create the space needed for proper eruption of teeth.
Other common issues addressed in adolescent orthodontics can include:
- Malocclusion – a condition in which positioning of tooth or jaw may be problematic in function and appearance
- TMJ (Temporomandibular Joint Problems) – refers to pain in the jaw created by misalignment or issues affecting the joints and muscles surrounding the jaw area
- Aesthetics – this is an overall term used to describe the correction, improvement, and appearance of teeth – straightening and adjusting through use of orthodontic devices and treatments (braces, Invisalign, etc.)
At Carter Orthodontics, in addition to early detection, we are proponents of preventative dental care. Adolescence is a time of life that can present challenges when it comes to proper oral hygiene and consistency.
We try to empower children, teens, and parents with the necessary tools to incorporate braces and routine oral hygiene with the use of electric toothbrushes that are given to those with braces to help maintain proper oral health.
Our hope is to prevent future problems, save time and money to help children of all ages established healthy standards of self-care. Sometimes it’s as easy as a demonstration on the right way to brush and floss, and highlighting pitfalls of diet and nutrition that impact dental health.
Some of the methods of early detection and prevention we address are in an effort to:
- stop harmful oral habits
- help redirect abnormal jaw growth
- create room for erupting permanent teeth
- reduce the likelihood of trauma to protruding teeth
- help avoid the future need for permanent tooth extraction