Orthopaedics involves early interceptive orthodontic treatment and can be initiated on many types of bite problems before all of the permanent teeth are present.
Orthopaedic treatment is necessary in many cases when the child’s teeth, lips or jaws are not developing normally for their age.
Orthopaedic treatment can:
- Minimise severe malocclusions (bad bites)
- Improve facial appearance and self esteem
- Minimise the effects of abnormal growth patterns and guide growth more favourably
- Reduce protrusion (buck teeth) to decrease chance of injury
- Reduce the need for or minimise the number of permanent teeth extracted
- Improve the alignment of the upper to the lower jaw
- Decrease or eliminate adverse habits such as thumb sucking or tongue thrusting during swallowing as the dental arches are developing, making more room for the tongue
- Make the orthodontic (braces) treatment easier and shorter
- Improve nasal breathing and improve health
- Prevent headache and ear ache
Orthopaedic treatment may involve:
- Expanding appliances to broaden the dental arches and prevent crowding while widening the smile
- Jaw positioning appliances which can help correct your profile and improve the bite
- Myofunctional appliances (habit correction) which assist in prevention of potential causes of a bad bite
Most of these appliances are removable, making them easy to clean and allowing you to keep your teeth clean, though fixed alternatives may be required to improve compliance and enhance treatment. The needs of the individual and the type of correction needed will determine whether a fixed or removable alternative is recommended.
It is important to talk to Dental Excellence about your child’s orthopaedic needs to plan for a great smile for the future.
The exact type of treatment for your child depends on a thorough examination and diagnosis of the problem and quite often the problem is more complex than just ‘crooked teeth’. Treatment during this Orthopaedic phase may range from simple supervision and guidance to the use of fixed and removable appliances.
Orthopaedics is normally the first ‘ortho’ procedure undertaken to prepare the teeth for orthodontic work though if left until the completion of growth into adulthood, corrections such as orthognathic surgery to move the jaws rather than guide growth may be the only way to correct the problem.