Why would my child need treatment if baby teeth are still present?
How will early treatment affect my child in the future?
What is the difference of starting early versus waiting until my child is older?
Questions like these are common amongst parents. Parents often wonder why their child has a bad bite or why teeth are “coming in crooked.” Crowding of teeth and malocclusion (bad bite) at an early age can be due to heredity, early or late loss of baby teeth, trauma, or bad habits such as thumb sucking.
Early treatment, or Phase I, addresses problems in the mixed dentition with the goals of guiding the child’s growth and preventing a more complicated treatment in the future that may involve extraction of permanent teeth or surgery. The idea is to avoid “missing the boat” on the ideal time to correct a certain problem. Because permanent teeth do not always follow the path of baby teeth after they are lost, a second phase of treatment is commonly needed after permanent teeth erupt to finalize the alignment and fit of teeth.
Beginning treatment early in some kids can also help especially if the child is being teased at school. The psychosocial benefits of increased self-esteem and confidence from early treatment in these children can surely have a long-lasting effect.
Come see us if your child is or has:
- Crowded or “blocked out” teeth
A thumb or finger sucking habit
- Shifting of the jaw
- Difficulty chewing or biting food
Baby teeth loss
- Crossbites or underbites