We’re orthodontists in London (Chelsea & Marylebone). Early orthodontic (or interceptive) treatment describes any treatment that is recommended by the orthodontist when your child is between 7 and 10 years of age. During this time almost all children will have a mixture of “adult” and “baby” teeth still present. The aim is to intervene early and “intercept” any abnormalities in the development of the teeth and bite.
It is important to take action early if your child’s bite is not right. Early intervention is often in a child’s best interests. If planned and implemented at the right time, this modern approach can reduce or prevent the need for braces when your child is older.
Early orthodontic treatment
2 Phase orthodontic Treatment
Benefits of Early orthodontic Treatment
Early orthodontic treatment has five key benefits:
- Treatment is more effective while your child is still growing.
- Reduces the likelihood of complications e.g. damage to the roots or trauma.
- Potentially avoids more complex treatment in the future.
- In some cases it avoids the need to extract permanent teeth.
- Improves your child’s self esteem and confidence.
Signs that your child’s bite is not right:
There are a few simple visual checks you can do to see if a visit to the orthodontic specialist might be useful:
- Early or late loss of milk teeth, or excessively spaced teeth
- Difficulties with biting into food e.g. your child bites using their molars and not their front teeth
- Mainly breathes through their mouth and does not seem to be able to close their lips fully
- Misshapen or angled teeth, e.g. the front or lower teeth stick out, the teeth meet unusually or don’t meet at all
- Very crowded teeth or extra teeth
- Grinding or clenching of teeth
- They bite their cheek or other soft tissues or frequently have a rash around the mouth
- Thumb/finger or dummy sucking beyond the age of 4
The benefits of interceptive treatment
Interceptive treatment takes advantage of the early growth spurt and turns a difficult orthodontic problem into a more manageable one and delivers not only better results but also better long-term stability of the positioning of the teeth.
Important to know: A lot of interceptive orthodontic treatments will require a follow-up treatment to achieve an ideal final bite. The goal of this second phase is to ensure each tooth is in the correct location in the mouth, where it fits perfectly with the lips, tongue, cheeks and the other teeth. When this balance is established, your child’s teeth will function together properly.
Orthodontics with Happy Kids Dental
Types of early orthodontic treatments are:
- Thumb sucking habit cessation
- Interceptive extractions
- Growth modification (functional/myofunctional braces)
Some treatment solutions include Invisalign First, Fixed or Removable Appliances.