Could your child’s smile benefit from orthodontic treatment?
Our Northvale, NJ, dentist Dr. Kristine Hyon understands that a healthy, beautiful smile can build confidence, even in children. Of course, we also know that most children don’t have perfectly straight and even smiles. If you are curious to know whether your little one might benefit from coming into our office for an evaluation, here are some signs that braces may be right for them.
Premature loss of baby teeth
Children will start to lose their baby teeth around 5 to 6 years old, so if you see that your child’s losing baby teeth before 5 years old or that their teeth aren’t falling out when they should, then your little one may benefit from braces. If your child’s baby teeth fall out too soon this can leave large gaps in their smiles for long periods of time until their permanent teeth finish developing. This can cause speech delays and trouble chewing. If your child loses teeth too late this can also affect the alignment of their smile.
They have a bad bite
If your child’s jaws aren’t properly aligned this can lead to a malocclusion, or “bad bite," in which teeth don’t line up with one another the way they should. This can make it difficult for children to chew, and it can increase their risk for developing TMJ disorder (a painful condition that affects how the jaw joints function). Orthodontic treatment from our Northvale, NJ, family dentist can easily realign the jaws, so they fit together properly.
They have a crowded smile
Are your child’s teeth overlapping each other? This is a common problem known as crowding. This occurs when your child’s jaws are just a little too small to accommodate all of the permanent teeth that are coming in. Unfortunately, a crowded smile can make it difficult to properly clean teeth, leading to cavities and gum disease. It can also make chewing and speaking more challenging and increase the likelihood that your child will become a mouth breather. Fortunately, braces can easily correct overlapping and crowded smiles.
Your child sucks their thumb
This is a habit that a lot of children have, but later in life, it can impact the alignment of their smiles. This is why it’s important to give children pacifiers and other ways to self soothe so they aren’t sucking their thumb. Thumb sucking can push your child’s front teeth forward, so they protrude. It can also lead to crowding in the bottom teeth. While this is a common habit between the ages of 2-4, if your child is sucking their thumb by the time their permanent teeth erupt, then they may need to get braces to correct the dental issues that will arise.
Do you want to sit down with our Northvale, NJ, dentist to discuss orthodontic treatment options for your child or teen? If so, KHL Orthodontics has offices in Northvale, NJ, and New York, NY. Call us at (201) 767-4555 or (347) 556-5337 to schedule a no-risk consultation.