Children's Braces in Irvine, CA
As a child’s mouth grows and develops, it is not uncommon for the teeth to become crooked, twisted, overlapping, or otherwise misplaced. It is also not uncommon for problems with the bite to develop. If left untreated, these differences in the placement of the teeth can have a significant effect on the child’s dental health.
Braces in children and teens are a treatment option that is conservative, effective, and affordable. The brackets and wires are carefully placed and maintained in such a way that the teeth, gums, and the bone beneath the gums are not harmed in any way.
Why Are Braces Necessary?
Many parents come to our office concerned about whether braces are even necessary. Although on the surface crooked teeth or a misplaced bite may appear to be cosmetic issues, the truth is that leaving this situation as is could place your child’s long-term dental health in jeopardy.
Crooked, crowded, and twisted teeth are difficult to brush and floss properly. Despite your child’s best efforts, when the teeth are too close together or touching, toothbrushes and dental floss will not be able to effectively clean the surfaces of the teeth, leading to the formation of plaque and tartar, which in turn lead to cavities and gum disease.
A misplaced bite causes the teeth to line up in an unusual way, subjecting the teeth to pressure and chewing forces that they weren’t designed to handle. In time, the result can be headaches, jaw pain, worn down or eroded teeth, and even fractured teeth.
How Do Braces Solve the Problem?
Braces use gentle pressure to move the teeth back into their correct position, improving both the aesthetics and the health of your child’s mouth. Before we begin treatment, Dr. Robertson will sit down with you and your child to discuss your goals and treatment options. We’ll work with you to create a treatment plan that meets you and your child’s needs.
While orthodontic treatment is often associated with the teenage years, it’s often appropriate to begin treatment earlier. Palatal arch expansion with an expander creates room in the mouth and can eliminate the problem of crowding and crossbite – without the need for extractions. For the most successful expansion, this should be done before the growth plate fuses, which happens around the age of 14 to 16. Bringing your child in early for an orthodontic evaluation gives us more treatment options and can simplify future orthodontic care.
When treatment begins, Dr. Robertson may place an expander prior to the brackets being bonded. Once the brackets are bonded, wires will be run along through the brackets and tightened slightly. This creates a steady pressure that causes the teeth to be slightly loosened so that they can be moved into the correct position. This is done by slowly adjusting the pressure to guide the teeth into the correct position.
Many parents (and their kids) groan at the thought of being in braces for a couple of years, but the reality is that it’s important to take our time when moving teeth. If we try to speed up the process, the teeth and the underlying bone structure could be damaged, and nobody wants that to happen.
Once the brackets, wires, and elastics are placed, you’ll simply return to our office periodically so that Dr. Robertson can check your child’s progress and make any necessary adjustments. We’ll provide you with the self-care instructions you need to keep both your braces and your teeth in excellent shape.
To learn more about braces for children and orthodontics, please call our Irvine dental office today to schedule a consultation with Dr. Jeff Robertson.?