Malocclusion is among the most common cosmetic problems in the United States, especially among children and teenagers. If your child has malocclusion, it means they have crooked or overcrowded teeth. In other instances, they have a problem with their bite, where the lower and upper teeth don't line up when they close their mouth. However, the problem can be corrected using kids' braces.
Why Does Your Child Need Braces?
Children with malocclusion may not like the way their teeth look, which can significantly affect their psychological wellbeing. In many cases, dental irregularities in children meaningfully affect their interpersonal relationships and may lead to feelings of inferiority. If your child has malocclusion, they can be a target of name-calling and teasing by their schoolmates.
Also, crooked and crowded teeth can lead to other dental problems. Normally, it's hard to clean overcrowded teeth, leading to tooth decay, gum disease, and tooth loss. Other problems caused by malocclusion include:
- Jaw joint problems
- Teeth grinding
- Problems speaking or eating
- Mouth breathing
- Loss of milk teeth very late or too soon
How Braces Can Help
If your child has bite irregularities, you should take them to an orthodontic specialist for a detailed exam. During diagnosis, the orthodontist will:
- Perform a comprehensive physical exam
- Collect information about your child's health history
- Take x-rays
- Make a plaster model of your kid's teeth to evaluate the severity of the malocclusion.
Since bite irregularities in children become noticeable between the ages of 6 and 12, it's advisable to seek orthodontic treatment when your child reaches seven years old. After a thorough examination, the orthodontists will decide if the misalignment needs to be fixed or not.
The treatment recommended by the orthodontist will depend on various factors, including the symptoms presented, your child's age, and their general health. Sometimes the dental specialist may recommend tooth removal or jaw surgery. However, in most cases, bite irregularities can be corrected using mouth appliances like braces.
Braces are effective at slowly moving the teeth to correct the bite. With time, the braces move the child's jaw into the right position.
In this regard, kids braces ensure correct teeth alignment and bite, significantly enhancing your child's confidence and self-esteem. Other benefits of braces include:
- Improved ability to chew food
- Reduced risks of periodontal disease and cavities
- Improved speech
- Reduced chipping and grinding of teeth
- Improved facial appearance
If malocclusion in children is not corrected, it can result in many other complications, such as speech problems and issues with self-confidence. Visit an orthodontist and ask how braces can be used to correct misaligned or crowded teeth.