Orthodontic Treatment: Give your child the gift of a healthy smile

Children should start to see their family dentist around the age of one year old. However, as the child gets a little older (around the age of six or seven), it is not too early to consider getting an appraisal of your child’s smile to see if your orthodontist can make improvements to enhance your child’s dental health as well as provide a smile makeover for aesthetic improvements.

A pretty smile is not the only advantage to straight teeth. When teeth are crooked, there are many areas that are difficult to reach with a toothbrush. These areas are particularly susceptible to dental decay.

Decay isn’t the only concern. When oral areas are difficult to reach with a toothbrush and floss, they become breeding grounds for bacteria and plaque build-up. These areas may develop gum disease.

An orthodontic consultation will provide an outline detailing the process involved with correcting a malocclusion. X-rays, photographs and dental impressions are often the first step. Depending on the severity of the condition the period of time needed to wear braces will be estimated.

The orthodontist will advise exactly what results can be expected. If jaw space is too limited to accommodate all permanent teeth, a recommendation may be made for the extraction of one or more teeth.

While braces are in place, the patient will be taught the optimum methods of keeping teeth and gum tissue healthy. In addition to daily brushing and flossing, visits to the dentist every six months for a thorough cleaning and dental exam are needed. Periodic visits to the orthodontist will not replace these needed appointments.

Over time, the braces will move teeth to their correct position. The orthodontist will make needed adjustments to keep the straightening process on track.

At the conclusion of orthodontic treatment, the braces will be removed. The patient will need to wear a retainer for a year or longer. This part of treatment is essential to maintaining the improvements achieved. The retainer will initially be worn 24/7, eventually graduating to wearing during the night only. But failure to observe this part of the process may result in teeth moving back to wear you started.

A healthy beautiful smile is the prize received at treatment conclusion with orthodontists in DFW. While aesthetic improvements will make you smile, improved dental health will be achieved as well.