Orthodontic treatments have the goal of improving the alignment of the teeth. Teeth straightening is considered as a cosmetic dentistry treatment. However, there are also numerous functional benefits that can result when teeth are moved to better alignment. Straightening the teeth is most commonly associated with young patients in their adolescence or in young adulthood, although adult orthodontics can also be done in discreet ways to straighten more mature teeth. But did you know that teeth can be straightened much earlier than adolescence?
Interceptive orthodontics or early orthodontics deals with orthodontic treatments for patients with ages as young as 6 or 7 years old. This is the stage when the jaw is still growing, and teeth are still being developed. With that said, there may be certain conditions that are easier to correct, such as teeth crowding.
However, it should be noted that not all misalignment problems can be dealt with using early orthodontics. In detail, the two conditions that will need early orthodontics are front teeth protrusion and crossbites. Protruding front teeth can result in injuries during accidents, while a crossbite can cause problems with the way the jaw grows.
There are advantages to early orthodontic intervention for children. These early orthodontic treatments can take advantage of the fact that the child’s jaw is still growing, and changes to teeth alignment are easier to manage. To specify, early intervention is useful in correcting the position of the jaws, or in encouraging the correction of the dental arches. While additional treatments may be needed as the child grows older, they may be shorter or less complicated.