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Pediatric Services

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Thumb Sucking
Tooth Eruption
Early Childhood Tooth Decay
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Gum Disease
Pregnancy & Oral Health
Infant Care
Adolescence & Oral Care
What to Tell Your Child
Emergency Pediatric Care
Orthodontic Treatment
Elastics - Braces
Rapid Palatal Expander
Orthodontic Emergencies
Eating with Braces
Types of Occlusions (Bites)

Pediatric Orthodontics

The doctors at Pediatric Dental Specialists, PA will perform an orthodontic evaluation at every cleaning appointment. Upon the findings of the evaluation, the doctor will recommend to either wait and watch the child grow or recommend orthodontic records be taken. If the child is ready for orthodontic records, a set of molds or digital scan, photographs and specials x-rays will be taken in order for the doctor to build a treatment plan designed specifically for the child. Once completed, the next step is an orthodontic consultation. During the consultation, treatment will be recommended based upon the doctor’s findings. All questions regarding treatment and associated fees will be answered during the consultation. The next step is to get started with orthodontic treatment.

There are two types of orthodontic treatment that our doctors provide: Interceptive orthodontic treatment and comprehensive orthodontic treatment.

Interceptive Orthodontic Treatment

Interceptive treatment is typically recommended between the ages of 7 – 10 years when the child has most of their baby teeth and a few of their permanent teeth. Treatment is recommended for younger children who have jaw discrepancies. The reason being is that it is easier to manipulate a growing jaw versus a non-growing jaw. The main goal of Interceptive treatment is to reduce or eliminate the probability of extractions, surgery and extended comprehensive treatment time.

Children who are recommended Interceptive treatment will more than likely need another phase of braces later on in adolescence. The goal of Interceptive treatment is not to avoid a second phase of braces, but to resolve the following problems while the child is growing:

- Creating room for crowded, erupting teeth
- Creating facial symmetry through influencing jaw growth
- Reducing the risk of trauma to protruding front teeth
- Preserving space for unerupted teeth
- Reducing the need for tooth removal
- Reducing treatment time with braces

The average treatment time for Interceptive treatment is between 9 – 16 months.

Comprehensive Orthodontic Treatment

Comprehensive treatment following an Interceptive treatment usually takes place a number of years later. Most or all of the permanent teeth need to have erupted before this step can be taken. The most common age is between 11 – 13 years of age.

“Traditional” braces typically consist of upper and lower brackets placed on the front of the teeth. Additional appliances or clear aligners may be recommended based upon the doctor’s findings. There are many appliances available and our doctors will decide which appliance (if needed) is right for the child. The length of treatment time is based upon each child. However, typical treatment times range from 18 months – 24 months.

Benefits of Orthodontic Treatment

The doctors at Pediatric Dental Specialists, PA recommend orthodontic treatment based upon the following benefits:

- Orthodontically corrected teeth are less prone to chipping and wear
- Well aligned teeth are easier to clean, and less likely to decay
- Ideally positioned teeth lessen the chance of gingivitis, recession, and gum disease
- A good bite results in less strain on jaw muscles/joints
- Better chewing
- Ability to close spaces and avoid the need for bridges or implants
- Increase confidence
- Improved self-acceptance and well-being

Untreated orthodontic problems may lead to the following issues:

- Tooth decay
- Periodontal disease
- Digestive difficulties
- Abnormal wear of tooth surfaces
- Stress on gum tissue
- Misalignment of the jaw joints can result in chronic headaches or pain the face or neck
- Low self-esteem

“The information on this site is provided for educational or informative purposes only; it is not intended to be a substitute for professional advice, recommendations or treatment”.

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