Question: What signs indicate that orthodontic treatment may be needed?
Answer: For both adults and children, signs that indicate a need for orthodontics include:
- Unusual facial profile
- Thumb and finger sucking
- Overlapping and crowded teeth
- Missing teeth
- Spaced teeth
- Protrusion of upper front teeth
- Showing too much gum tissue when smiling
- Poor relationship of back permanent teeth.
This will be obvious to your family dentist at an early age. If you have any concerns, ask your family dentist or call for an appointment. A referral is preferred, but not necessary. Children should be seen by age 7 if something seems unusual.
Question: How will my child benefit from straight teeth?
Answer: Orthodontic treatment can enhance dental health and dramatically improve facial appearance. Patients can more easily clean and care for their teeth when they are properly aligned. Correcting a bite helps with improved chewing and speech, as well as reducing future wear of the teeth and stress on the supporting bone and jaw joints (TMJ). Changes in facial appearance frequently improve an individual's self-confidence and self-image.
Question: How does orthodontic care improve self-image?
Answer: Scientific research has repeatedly shown the mouth and face to be focal points of communication and social interaction. Appearance has been related to interpersonal popularity, social behavior, self-expectation, personality style, and self-image. There can be little doubt that an attractive facial appearance and smile can improve the quality of life in many dimensions. Facial and dental esthetics are carefully considered in planning individual treatment strategies.
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