Signs That Your Child Needs Braces
Sep 5, 2022
Getting braces is a common rite of passage for children in the United States. Millions of people at any given time in the US have braces on their teeth. Braces can be expensive, though, so it’s important for parents to know the signs that their children need braces so they’re getting them at the time they’ll be the most effective.
You Child Has Trouble Biting and Chewing
If you notice that your child has difficulty properly biting and chewing food, this could be an indication that they need braces. This problem could be caused by the teeth being misaligned within the mouth. This kind of misalignment may be difficult to see, so if you notice your child having trouble eating, mention it to your dentist.
Your Child Mostly Breathes Through Their Mouth
Mouth-breathing can impact the shape of your child’s face and is typically caused when the child can’t rest their tongue on the roof of their mouth. Breathing predominantly through the mouth can result in a narrower jaw, which in turn results in a crowded mouth because there isn’t enough room for all of the teeth.
Your Child’s Mouth Is Too Crowded
Children with smaller mouths may not have enough room for all of their teeth to properly come in. This could result in teeth coming in crooked or in the wrong places. Braces would be needed to correct this problem.
Your Child Lost Their Baby Teeth Early
If your child loses their baby teeth earlier than usual, other baby teeth could move into the space left behind, messing up the alignment of the adult teeth.
Your Child Lost Their Baby Teeth Late
Similarly, if your child loses their baby teeth late alignment issues could result.
There Are Gaps Between Your Child’s Teeth
Unlike alignment issues further back in the mouth, gaps between the teeth can be easier to spot. If you see that your child has spaces in between any of their teeth, then they may need braces. If there are gaps with the baby teeth, you may not need to worry about braces yet because the gaps could resolve themselves as the adult teeth come in. However, keep an eye on the gaps and ask your dentist about them.
Your Child Has an Underbite
An underbite occurs when the bottom teeth stick out beyond the front teeth, usually because the upper part of the jaw didn’t grow enough or the lower part of the jaw grew too much. Braces can help to correct this.
Your Child Has an Overbite
The upper teeth are supposed to be in front of the bottom teeth, but if they protrude out too much, then this can cause an overbite. This could prevent your child from closing their lips completely, which can result in mouth-breathing, which in turn can affect the growth of the jaw and positioning of the teeth.
Your Child Sucks Their Thumb
Thumb-sucking is common with children of a certain age. However, once teeth start to grow in, continuing to suck their thumb could result in teeth misplacement and jaw misalignment.
Your Child’s Teeth Are Crooked
Finally, if your child’s teeth are crooked for any reason, whether it’s crowding or something else, braces can help to correct that. Crooked teeth aren’t just an aesthetic problem; they could potentially impact oral health as well.
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