As your child grows older and gets their full set of adult teeth, things can go a bit haywire. Teeth are shifting and moving in their mouths, and they may be crooked and overlapping. Dr. Linda Hallman of FitBite Orthodontics discusses getting braces for kids in Chevy Chase, MD, and what you need to know.
What Exactly are Traditional Metal Braces?
When you think about braces, these are probably what you imagine. Metal brackets are cemented to the teeth and a wire is threaded through them. This wire is what slowly positions your teeth. The wire is adjusted by the orthodontist throughout the length of treatment to make sure the teeth end up in the proper place.
This is one of the most used treatments in orthodontics for a reason. Traditional braces work for patients of all ages and give great results. They’re also designed to take on bigger problems than just some cosmetic issues with crooked teeth. They can do more with your bite and jaw as well.
What Can Braces for Kids Treat?
If your child sees the dentist regularly, they may suggest that they go to an orthodontist. This means that they found something in the bite or teeth that needs orthodontic attention. Dr. Hallman can closely examine the jaw and teeth to determine what the problem is and how they can go about getting it fixed.
Conditions that can be treated with traditional braces include:
- Crooked teeth
- Gaps in between teeth
- Overcrowded teeth
- An imbalanced bite
- Jaw pain
All of these things involve the alignment of your jaw and teeth. Dr. Hallman will be able to recommend the exact protocol to make sure that your child gets the treatment they need.
Early Intervention for Children
One of the things braces for kids can be used for is early intervention. As they’re growing, so are their jaws and teeth. Younger children can get under and overbites, crossbites, overcrowding, and jaws that don’t accommodate the teeth. If we treat this early, it’s known as Phase I of orthodontic treatment.
Phase I treatment can make things a lot easier for children down the road. They won’t need severe orthodontic treatment — or possibly any at all — if they’ve had Phase I treatment already. It encourages the mouth and jaw to grow in the correct way after orthodontic equipment has adjusted the prominent problem. Traditional braces are a great way to accomplish this.
Other Types of Braces
The one downside of metal braces is that they’re very visible. For many patients, that makes them self-conscious. However, there are alternatives to metal braces. For instance, Invisalign uses clear aligners to slowly move your teeth into position. Lingual braces are the same as metal braces, but they go on the back of your teeth instead of the front.
Dr. Hallman will talk with you and see if other forms of braces are an option for you. There are some severe cases that may be required to use traditional metal braces. However, if it’s a more cosmetic issue of crooked teeth, you’ll probably be able to use a less noticeable option.
Braces for Kids in Chevy Chase, Maryland
Dr. Hallman is proud to be able to offer kids — and patients of all ages — straighter smiles. Call us today or schedule an appointment online to get started!