One of the essential and non-negotiable steps in making sure your child’s teeth are in tip-top shape is to invest in the expertise of dental care professionals. No matter how diligent or meticulous you are about at-home hygiene such as regular brushing and flossing, it is still important to take your kid to a trusted dental facility so their oral health can be checked and problems that may not be so obvious to you can be detected and addressed effectively.
When you consult a regular dentist or a pediatric dentist, your child may sometimes be referred to an orthodontist. A kids’ orthodontist will have the skills, training and capacity to examine and treat your little one’s potential teeth and jaw alignment problems. Using panoramic X-rays and other special equipment, the orthodontist will examine the alignment of your kid’s teeth, check for impacted molars, look for overbites, inspect for uneven jaw movements, and look for other irregularities that affect overall oral health.
To make the most out of your kid’s orthodontic treatment, remember the following:
Be an early bird. Even without the recommendation of a dentist, it’s still a good idea to take your child to the orthodontist for his or her first screening at a young age. This should be before 7 years old, because that’s the time when most kids’ first molar would have erupted, and not later than age 12. If orthodontic interventions are necessary, you can get the best outcome by doing them before your child reaches complete dental growth.
Arrive with information. Go to your first consultation armed with a list of concerns or questions you want to ask. These may be the issues or concerns you may have regarding your child’s dental health. Does your child make grinding noises while asleep? Do you notice a bit of bleeding when he brushes his teeth? It’s also helpful to show your child’s medical history and dental history to the orthodontist for a more accurate reading of your child’s condition.
Ask questions. Make sure you understand everything about your child’s treatment plan—from the procedures to the cost of each treatment. Some treatments may seem complicated or sophisticated, but don’t be intimidated. If you have no idea about the appliances that will be used for the treatment, ask for an explanation. If you’re not sure if you can afford a procedure, ask about insurance benefits, payment plans and financing options available to you.
Make a commitment. To truly enjoy the advantages of orthodontics, make sure to follow-through treatments with proper dental hygiene. Help your child follow the rules on keeping their teeth and gums healthy and they’ll reap the rewards of a great smile for life.