Orthodontic treatment for teens differs from treatment for younger children because, by age 13, all of the baby teeth will have been lost, and the jaw bones will stop growing and harden. Sunny Smiles Kids Pediatric Dentistry and Orthodontics in Del Mar, CA offers a variety of orthodontic treatments.
Orthodontic treatment addresses both tooth straightening and the physical and facial changes a young patient goes through in the teen years. It is designed to maximize the opportunity to create the ideal healthy, aesthetic, and functional smile that a child can enjoy for the rest of their life.
The goal of this stage is to help the jaw develop properly to successfully accommodate all of the permanent teeth. During this stage, we will also ensure that the upper and lower jaws fit together. This stage usually begins before the teen years to aid the progression of stage two treatment. Orthodontic records, such as models of the teeth, x-rays, and photographs, will be taken to determine the best type of appliance to be used for the child and to create a treatment plan.
No work will be done on the teeth during this period. Instead, the permanent teeth will simply be allowed to erupt naturally. The success of stage one should have created sufficient room for the permanent teeth to come in without any problems. Your dentist will monitor this in periodic appointments during this resting period, and baby teeth may be removed in the best interest of erupting teeth.
This stage is when the teeth will change position until each tooth is in the right location in relation to the other teeth, lips, cheeks, and tongue. Using the orthodontic records taken during stage one, the orthodontic appliances will be placed onto the teeth after all the permanent teeth have erupted. Patients usually will be required to wear braces for about 24 months. Following this period, retainers should be worn to preserve the new position of the teeth.
For a consultation on orthodontic treatment for your teen, visit us at Sunny Smiles Kids Pediatric Dentistry and Orthodontics in Del Mar, CA.