It’s never too early to consider the possibility your child needs braces. These teeth-straighteners can help your little ones have more than just dazzling smiles. They can also boost their oral health and general well-being.
That’s why it’s important to consider how your child feels about his or her own teeth. According to researchers, kids are as affected as adults when it comes to the looks of their teeth. A study found that bad bites and crooked teeth can affect their self-esteem.
For the most part, children are no different than adults when it comes to wanting to look and feel good. Did you know that 36% of American adults feel unhappy with how their teeth look? To be more precise, they feel unhappy with their smiles. As an adult yourself, you most likely feel the same way.
The question is, how can you tell that your child has the need for these oral appliances? Look for these telltale signs.
1. Teeth Crookedness or Crowding
These are the most obvious signs your child needs kid’s braces. For instance, your kid has one or two twisted teeth. It’s also possible his or her teeth overlap with each other.
Either way, both are symptoms of crowding, often resulting from teeth malocclusion. If most or all of your little one’s teeth are already permanent, dental braces can help.
2. Incorrect Positioning of the Jaw
This is less obvious than crookedness or crowding but, if you look closer, you’ll still notice if your kid’s jaw has incorrect positioning. This is most noticeable when your child has his or her mouth closed.
That’s because incorrect jaw position can cause either an overbite or an underbite. To determine this, ask your kid to close his or her mouth. If there’s too much space between the upper and lower teeth, that’s a sign of an incorrect bite.
In this case, it’s a good time for your child to undergo orthodontic evaluation.
3. Gaps Between the Teeth
Known as diastema, gaps between your kid’s teeth may develop after the baby teeth fall out. In this case, the space is only temporary and may close up once their permanent teeth erupt.
In some cases, these gaps may be a sign a kid needs child braces. This is especially true if the spaces result from mismatching teeth and jaw sizes. Sometimes, the teeth are too small for the jaw, leading to all those bare spaces.
Either way, if you feel worried about those gaps, you should contact an orthodontist. This way, the specialist can determine what’s causing the gaps and if braces are the best solution.
4. Your Child Used to Thumb Suck
Children with a history of thumb sucking are often good candidates for dental braces. That’s because the habit may have put too much pressure on their teeth. As a result, it forced their front teeth to jut out excessively.
5. Problems with Biting and Chewing
Have you noticed your child having a hard time biting into foods like apples? Or do they feel pain when biting and chewing in general? If so, then you may need to set up a braces appointment ASAP.
Difficulties in biting and chewing may have something to do with incorrect bites. Dental braces can help correct these problems.
Don’t Put Off an Orthodontist Appointment If Your Child Needs Braces
If your little one has all these symptoms, it’s likely that braces are needed. It’s important you schedule a checkup with an orthodontist ASAP. Keep in mind that misaligned teeth can also increase risks for dental cavities.