When most people think of orthodontics, they think of teenagers. However, many children, including those with baby teeth still present, may have developing orthodontic problems that should be corrected early. Drs. Sletten and Brettin have the ability to spot early problems that may go unnoticed by parents or your family dentist. Many of these problems can be detected as early as age 7.
Problems that can be Detected at an Early Age
- Impacted teeth and severe crowding, which can only be evaluated from a panoramic X-ray
- Asymmetric jaw growth due to improper fit of back teeth from dental crossbites
- Development of a narrow upper jaw from nasal airway obstruction or oral habits
- Underbite or improper fit of front teeth that can cause abnormal jaw growth or increased tooth wear
- Dental openbites, which can lead to tongue-thrusting habits and the development of speech impediments and swallowing problems
- Flared upper teeth that can lead to increased risk of dental trauma
Advantages of Interceptive Treatment
For some children, available growth can positively affect treatment results. Some of the most desired results of interceptive treatment are:
- Creating room for crowded, erupting teeth
- Preventing tooth impaction
- Creating facial symmetry through influencing jaw growth
- Reducing the risk of trauma to protruding front teeth
- Preserving space for unerupted teeth
- Reducing the need for tooth removal
- Providing sufficient upper airway to promote growth & development
- Reducing treatment time with braces in the future
Most patients begin orthodontic treatment between the ages of 11 and 15, and for good reason. By age 12, most if not all of the permanent teeth have erupted and are in place, and crooked teeth, gaps and bad bites can easily be detected. Unfortunately these problems will hardly ever correct themselves, so this is when most parents decide to seek orthodontic treatment for their children.
This is also an excellent time to begin comprehensive orthodontic treatment because the potential for remaining jaw growth during the early pre-teen years can be a powerful force in achieving a successful treatment outcome. Compliance with Drs. Sletten and Brettin's instructions regarding oral hygiene and usage of rubber bands is equally critical to success. With so many children undergoing orthodontic treatment during this impressionable timeframe, the camaraderie and support of your child's peers can be invaluable.
Braces aren’t just for kids anymore. Approximately 30% all patients that Drs. Sletten and Brettin treat are adults, and they agree that it’s never too late to improve their greatest asset – their smile!
Orthodontic treatment during the adult years can dramatically improve your personal appearance and self-esteem. The health of your teeth and gums has been proven to be an important factor in your overall health and well-being. Crooked teeth and a bad bite can contribute to gum disease and bone loss, tooth decay, abnormal wear of the tooth enamel and surfaces, headaches and jaw joint (TMJ/TMD) pain.
Amazing Options for Adults
Great news! For those who are concerned that braces are unsightly and will take too long to complete, we offer some amazing options that will change how you feel about braces!
- Ceramic, or clear, braces are hardly noticeable by friends and colleagues and offer a great alternative to metal braces.
- SureSmile® technology and customized archwires can reduce the amount of time you spend in braces by 40%, on average. Many patients finish even sooner. Imagine gaining that new smile in less than a year! You can learn more about SureSmile by exploring our website.
Contact us today to schedule your complimentary orthodontic evaluation to learn how easy it is to obtain the beautiful smile that you deserve!