Taking Your Kids To An Orthodontist Around Age Seven Is Crucial To Preventing Bite Issues & Ensuring The Development Of A Healthy Smile. Learn More Today!

Early Treatment

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Patients of Dr. Gonzalez

Early Orthodontic Treatment

At the orthodontic office of Dr. Roy Gonzalez, we provide families with an individualized orthodontic treatment plan to ensure that they have a beautiful smile and great oral health. With our early orthodontic treatment, we help your kids with the foundation that they need to have a healthy smile that will last for years to come.  It is recommended by the American Association of Orthodontists that you schedule an appointment for an initial orthodontic screening by the time your kids are around the age of 7. Choose Dr. Roy Gonzalez for your children’s orthodontic treatment to ensure that they get the professional treatment they deserve.   

Why Should I Take My Child To An Orthodontist?

Taking your children in for an initial orthodontic screening while they are still young will give their orthodontist an advantage when planning the ideal development of their smile. It’s important to note that this first examination does not necessarily always call for immediate treatment afterwards.  This stage is more focused on gaining a clear understanding of how your child’s smile is developing, and what risks they can be facing in the future.  Once Dr. Gonzalez is able to identify those risk factors, he can begin creating a personalized orthodontic treatment plan for the coming years that can prevent them, or fix and other issues that may arise.  

The reason that we recommend that you schedule your child’s first orthodontic appointment by the age of seven is because most children begin developing their first adult molars around the age of six.  In addition to their adult teeth beginning to come in, there are many other developmental markers that begin to show themselves during this time of rapid growth and change.  Identifying these markers are essential in providing effective preventive orthodontic treatment. 

Orthodontic Problems.

Bite Problems Fixed By Early Treatment

While your child’s first orthodontic appointment will be around age seven, treatment typically comes later between the ages of 9 and 14.  At this point, most of the baby teeth will be gone, and many of their permanent teeth have already started to take their place.  This makes it the ideal time for Dr. Gonzalez to begin treatment to fix various bite problems such as:  

Crossbite

This condition is where the upper teeth rest behind the lower teeth when biting down.  To fix cases of crossbite, we use an appliance called a palatal expander, which gradually and painlessly widens the upper jaw. If the problem is left untreated, it may require more extensive treatment, possibly even oral surgery, to correct it.  

Crowding 

This condition is where there is not enough room in the mouth for all of the permanent teeth to fit comfortably, which results in teeth developing at various angles and a smile that does not align.  Using a palatal expander or performing a tooth extraction are common treatments that can help the adult teeth erupt properly. Even if braces are required later, the treatment time will likely be shorter and less complicated.

Underbite & Overbite

Underbite occurs when the lower teeth overlap the top teeth, and overbite is when the top teeth overlap the bottom teeth. This type of bite issue can be dangerous, since the teeth exposed in the front can be more prone to chipping and fractures. The cause of these bite issues are due to over development of the upper or lower jaw, which can be corrected by using braces and headgear.  If the problems are left untreated, surgery may be required later on. 

Bad Habits Corrected With Orthodontic Care

Certain habits can have a detrimental effect on your child’s oral health, influencing the development on their teeth and jaw. Even though the habits themselves seem harmless, they can increase the likelihood of your child developing a bite issue. Some of these bad habits include: 

Thumb SuckingDangers of Thumb Sucking.

The sucking reflex is natural in early childhood as thumb-sucking has a calming effect for infants, with the reflex usually disappearing between ages 2 and 4. However if it persists much later, it can lead to more serious bite issues.  When sucking on a finger, there is pressure being applied to the front teeth and upper jaw, which can cause the teeth to move apart and the jaw to change shape.  This can lead to the orthodontic problem called “open bite,” and may impair speech. An open bite can also be caused by the force of the tongue pushing forward against the teeth (tongue thrusting).

Mouth Breathing

This is an abnormal breathing pattern that children can develop in which the mouth always remains open, passing air directly to the lungs.  Children can pick up this habit due to difficulty breathing, such as having a blocked airway, turning to mouth breathing as a solution to breathe easier.   With a consistent habit of mouth breathing, it can lead to alterations in the tongue and face, including abnormal jaw growth that can lead to serious orthodontic problems. It may cause the upper and lower jaw to grow abnormally, which can lead to serious orthodontic problems. 

Orthodontic treatment can be used to prevent or break these habits in your children, helping reduce the chances of developing serious bite issues. The effects of certain habits may be difficult to pick up on, but taking your child to Dr. Gonzalez for early orthodontic treatment will help identify these problems right away and allow us to create a treatment plan to ensure your child has a healthy smile.

Schedule An Appointment For Your Children Today!

If you would like to learn more about early orthodontic treatment, or if you would like to schedule an appointment for your child’s first evaluation, just contact us and a member of our team will be happy to assist you. We look forward to helping your child build toward a healthier future and a brighter smile. 

The office of Dr. Roy Gonzalez, Jr.

  • Dr. Roy Gonzalez, Jr. - 1100 N.W. Loop 410 Suite 560, San Antonio, TX 78213 Phone: 210-344-9295

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