As a parent it’s not unusual to have questions about orthodontic treatment for your kids. We thought we’d do some investigating for you and speak to the lovely team at Transform Orthodontic Care.
The Transform team is led by Dr Daniel De Angelis, a South Australian accredited Specialist Orthodontist, who, has been straightening teeth and correcting bites for over 20 years. As a father to two young children, Dr De Angelis understands the challenges of parenthood and is caring and sensitive to the needs of his all his patients, particularly his youngest ones. He loves to see the excitement in their eyes as their smile and confidence transforms.
Dr Daniel De Angelis
Here’s some orthodontic advice straight from the Dr’s mouth:
What age should my child see an orthodontist?
As your child starts to lose their baby teeth to make way for adult teeth, you might be wondering whether their teeth are growing ‘normally’, and whether you need to take them to see a dentist or an orthodontist. Like everything when it comes to children, every child is different! Whether they need orthodontic treatment will really depend on the child, and if there is an issue that needs to be treated. My view is that seeing an orthodontist for an assessment at 7 years of age is a good idea. It means we can either rule out the need for early treatment, or if there are any problems present, we can talk you through the best course of action to put you and your child’s minds at ease. Correcting a potential problem before it eventuates can often be less complex than delayed treatment. For some children, early treatment can prevent physical trauma to the protruding front teeth and reduce emotional distress. Essentially, early orthodontic treatment can also save you money down the track, by reducing the need for more expensive treatment in later life (which we all like to hear!).
How do I know when to take my child to see an orthodontist?
If any of following things are concerning you, your child might need an orthodontic assessment: -Early loss of baby teeth (before age five) -If your child’s teeth don’t meet properly when biting -If your child’s front teeth are crowded (around age seven or eight) -Protruding front teeth -Biting or chewing difficulties -If your child’s jaw shifts when he or she opens or closes the mouth -If your child is older than five years and still sucks a thumb or finger
How do we determine if early orthodontic treatment is necessary?
One of the ways we determine if early orthodontic treatment is necessary in a child aged eight to ten is through identification of a developing malocclusion (known as a “bad bite”). This could include crowding, deep bites, crossbites and open bites. Early orthodontic treatment can assist in correcting more serious bite related problems, by guiding the jaw’s growth patterns and helping to make extra room in the mouth for permanent teeth as they come in. It’s important to begin early orthodontic treatment while a child’s jaw bones are still soft, as the bones are still pliable, making corrective procedures faster and more effective than in teens and adults. Appropriate early treatment is an effective pre-emptive measure that lays the foundation for a healthy and well-functioning mouth in adulthood.
Do I need a referral from a Dentist?
No, you don’t need a referral from a dentist. I like my patients to see their dentists regularly for a check-up and clean, maintaining general dental care is important. Our patients are rewarded with a movie voucher if they see their dentists every six months for a check-up and clean.