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As your child grows up, as a parent, you are not only concerned about his or her health but also their ‘good looks’! Misaligned, crooked or d-shaped teeth increases your cause of worry. You want your child to look perfect and presentable in the best possible manner! Earlier the problem detected, easier it is is resolved. Therefore, most of us prefer to start early. Most importantly, the American Dental Association (ADA) suggests that use of dental braces in children can start as early as the age of seven.
When the upper and then lower jaw do not synchronize with each other, certain biting problems surface. Medically, they are termed as overbite, under-bite, or cross-bite. When the upper jaw lies too far as compared to the lower jaw, that is, the upper jaw seems to cross the lower jaw (in rest position) it is known as overbite.
Similarly, when the lower jaw cross the upper jaw (while in rest position) and as a result seems to ride over the upper jaw, it is termed as under-bite. However, under-bites are less common in children than overbites. Children are more commonly noticed with a protruding upper jaw than the lower one.
Apart from biting irregularities, children are affected with problems like teeth-spacing, overcrowded teeth and misplaced mid-line. Gaps and unnecessary spacing between teeth due to missing teeth or inherently faulty alignment of the teeth, are very common in kids. The only way to address this issue at such a tender age is to use dental braces. Braces used at an early stage, indeed becomes more effective because, the softer gums and dental infrastructure is easier to correct!
Misplaced mid-line is an issue where, the mid-line of the upper front tooth does not match with the mid-line of the lower front tooth. All the concerns related to a child’s dental structure may be inherent or due to any accident. But most commonly, the problems arise due to the habit of thumb-sucking.
If you are specifically planning for a smile correcting treatment, visit an orthodontist. An orthodontist specializes in the use of different dental appliances that are used for corrective purposes. Braces is one among them.
Broadly classified, braces are of two types - the metallic braces and the ceramic ones. The metallic braces consist of brackets made of stainless steel. Ceramic ones are usually preferred to the metallic ones, the reason being, they are less visible compared to their steel counterparts. Moreover, the wire that is used to anchor the brackets to the teeth of your child is made of nickel-titanium. This combination makes ceramic braces almost tooth-colored and less noticeable.
The custom made dental corrective appliances are popularly called “trays”. They are clear, invisible devices made in the shape of the candidates existing tooth. By wearing them, the required amount of pressure is exerted which eventually corrects the shape and position of the teeth.
The term lingual means ‘tongue’. These braces have been named so because the only issue with such braces is that the tongue needs some time to adapt to the unusual feeling that persists. Actually, lingual braces are ‘inside braces’, that is, they are fitted to the inner surface of your teeth. Therefore, your child can feel its touch in the tongue. Although lingual braces do not score high in matters of functionality and effectiveness, they are in demand because they are least visible (almost remaining hidden)!
They are almost like the traditional and ceramic braces. The brackets in these braces are fitted with clips which help them to cling to the wire. Therefore, they also retain lesser amounts of food. This makes them less problematic and easy to adapt with. They can be found in both the ceramic and metallic versions. Orthodontists today are mostly found using this form of fixed braces because, much lesser time for treatment is required as compared to the traditional ones.
As far as malocclusions in kids is concerned, if you really want to start early, the options for dental corrective devices are many. Apart from braces, other easier tools may also be recommended by your dentist, such as rubber bands (elastics that use force to move the teeth or jaw in the desired position).
All you need to do is decide upon the best orthodontist in your area and take the initiative as soon as your child crosses the tender age of six! Book an appointment today!