When to See an Orthodontist

If you recognize any of these signs or concerns in your child or yourself, it might be time to schedule a consultation with an orthodontist.

  • You want a beautiful smile
  • You feel a great smile will improve your self-esteem and self-confidence
  • You want the best for your family
  • Early or late loss of baby teeth
  • Difficulty chewing or biting
  • Mouth breathing
  • Sucking the thumb or fingers, or other oral habits
  • Crowded, misplaced or blocked-out teeth
  • Jaws that shift, make sounds, protrude or are recessed
  • Speech difficulty
  • Biting the cheek or biting into the roof of the mouth
  • Protruding teeth
  • Teeth that meet in an abnormal way or don’t meet at all
  • Facial imbalance or asymmetry (features out of proportion to the rest of the face)
  • Grinding or clenching of theeth
  • Inability to comfortably close lips

Orthodontics Has Come a Long Way

A variety of orthodontic “appliances” are available today, thanks to on-going research in orthodontics. Options include traditional metal braces, tooth-colored braces, braces that go behind the teeth, clear aligners and other devices, as appropriate. Check with your orthodontist about the best way to achieve your treatment goals.

Comfortable and efficient, today’s orthodontic appliances also contribute to a stable, long-lasting result.

While the appliances used in orthodontic treatment have come a long way since orthodontics became dentistry’s first specialty in 1900, what endures is orthodontists’ desire to help you achieve your healthiest bite possible.

The following are the problems or sequelae of malocclusion:

  • Psychological and social problems such as introversion, self-consciousness, response to nicknames like “Bugs Bunny” and “Buck Teeth”
  • Poor appearance
  • Interference with normal growth and development such as crossbites causing asymmetry, overbite and overjet influences on bite and profile
  • Improper or abnormal muscle function and associated habits such as tongue thrust, lip biting,nail biting,finger sucking and teeth grinding
  • Abnormal swallowing
  • Mouth breathing
  • Improper mastication
  • Speech defects
  • Increased caries activity
  • Predilection to periodontal disease
  • Temporomandibular problems
  • Impacted and unerupted teeth leading to cysts and damage to other teeth
  • Predilection of accidents such as slip and fall injuries or sports injuries