Why does it matter if my kid has straight teeth?

Posted on April 27, 2021 | Hot Topics | Orthodontics

Why does it matter if my kid has straight teeth?

As a parent, this becomes a valid question, especially if you have a few mouths to consider. Does your child really need straight teeth? Isn’t a straight smile just a luxury, anyway? Hopefully we can provide you with a couple real answers to this question.

Practically speaking…

Teeth were designed to fit together. In order for your kid’s teeth to properly function, the top and bottom teeth need to align. When your child has straight teeth, they will be easier to clean. There are just less areas to collect plaque when your child doesn’t have crooked teeth to work around. In fact, flossing can be a real nuisance when teeth aren’t in their rightful spot. With plaque buildup, people are at higher risk for periodontal (gum) disease and decay.

How about just straightening the visible teeth?

Good question! Why not just straighten the teeth that people can see, and not adjust the back teeth?

When the whole mouth isn’t considered, there can be significant problems with proper jaw alignment. Malocclusion, or teeth that are improperly aligned, may lead to pain, grinding, and even chipping of teeth. With severe malocclusion, we see patients develop TMJ pain, headaches, and even migraines. 

When teeth are straight and aligned, the jaw gets a well-deserved break! Orthodontists are able to foresee these issues and set up a plan for your child to prevent many of the problems caused by malocclusion.

So, when should my kid visit an orthodontist? 

We recommend that your child see an orthodontist by age seven. That might seem young, but by that age your child typically has enough adult teeth for an orthodontist to foresee some future issues that may need to be addressed.

There are scenarios where it is better to get a head start on orthodontic treatment,  to prevent little problems from becoming more significant. It is often easiest to treat orthodontic issues when kids are younger, rather than waiting!

There is no down side to setting up a consultation with an orthodontist to have your bite evaluated! You can contact us today to set up an appointment!

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