Many people have to get braces on their teeth early on in their lives, so the need to get braces isn't unusual. Taking your child to the dentist regularly starting at age 1-2 can help them to figure out if there will be a need to put braces on later. Sometimes dental problems such as an under bite or a severe overbite can be passed down from generation to generation. Other problems include overcrowding or large spaces between teeth. Sometimes there are outside influences that can cause a child to need braces in the future. Here are some tips to help to try to prevent the need for future braces for your child, if heredity isn't a factor.
Losing Baby Teeth Too Early
If your child loses a tooth or several teeth too early in their development, or if there are teeth that must be extracted before their permanent teeth have developed within their gums, they may have problems with spacing in the future. When the tooth isn't there, other teeth can tend to move around that space. Always have your dentist consult with an orthodontist before teeth are pulled, or if teeth are lost a bit too early.
Losing Baby Teeth Too Late
When baby teeth are taking too long to fall out, permanent teeth can break through the gums behind the baby teeth and can cause problems. An X-ray can allow the dentist or orthodontist to decide if any baby teeth must be extracted in order to maintain healthy permanent teeth. When baby teeth stay too long in a child's mouth, problems with eating and speaking can occur as they grow. It can affect their overall smile, as well. The dentist can decide if the permanent teeth will be affected by baby teeth that don't fall out on their own. When removed, the teeth will more likely come through the gum in the correct position.
Growth in the Jaw Bone
As your child grows and gets bigger, the jaw bone will change. Occasionally children may need to expand their upper arch, and allow the permanent teeth to have more room to come in. In this case, a palate expander is put in and moves the bones into the correct position over time. Different dental appliances may be used to fix other problems with the bones in the jaw. If these types of problems are taken care of early, your child may not have the need for braces as an older child or a teenager.
Sucking the Thumb or Pacifiers
Most children that have a thumb sucking habit early on in life may have the ability to change the way their teeth grow in. If their finger is constantly pushing up or out on the top teeth, this will change the way these teeth grow in. A pacifier can also change the way the teeth grow in. Getting your child to rid themselves of these habits and self-sooth other ways can help to alleviate the need for braces in the future.
If your child does need to get braces, just remember that many advancements have been made to make them more comfortable and to look better. You may have to create some diet restrictions, as there will be foods that are off limits for someone with braces. You could also choose to go with Invisalign for your child, which is a type of braces treatment that can be removed in order to eat and properly clean them. Simply remember that if your child does get braces, their smile will be beautiful after the treatment. Talk to your dentist, such as Sunshine Dentistry, for more information.