Wednesday, January 24th, 2018

Early Intervention Orthodontics

August 3, 2011 by  
Filed under Dental Technology News, Dr. Smith's Blog

Traditional orthodontics has always been taught as a “wait and see” process.  By that, I mean to wait until all permanent teeth have erupted and then sort out the crowded  mess that has occurred.  This often requires four permanent teeth to be removed.  Often a “headgear” is used to move the upper front teeth back to close the spaces that remain.  This can lead to TMJ problems later since the lower jaw is limited in movement by moving the upper teeth backward.

A better approach is to take advantage of the child’s growing potential  early on (6-7 yrs of age) by placing expansion retainers, grow the necessary bone and when permanent tooth is erupted, straighten the teeth with braces (metal, clear, or invisible) without extracting any teeth.

We take a panoramic x-ray of your child at age 6-8 to see if there will be crowding by looking at the developing teeth in the bone on the film. If there is crowding visible, we can make models of the childs mouth and measure how much bone is required. We have used this treatment method for over 29 years with great success.  We rarely extracted  permanent teeth to treat our cases.

One of the problems with extracting teeth and pulling the front teeth back with head gear is that the child may develope TMJ problems later in life. This happens because the upper front teeth ,when they are brought back, keep the lower jaw from going foreward into its resting zone. This creates strain in the the Jaw joint (TMJ).Very few children have grown up experiencing tmj symptoms using this method of early intervention..  In fact, that is why I got involved with learning this treatment method because I treat tmj problems and found I needed to move the teeth differently from the  traditional orthodontic way. If your child is in the 6-8 year old age group you may want to seek out an early intervention orthodontic dentist, like us.

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  • Cecania Tallmadge

    So that's why most dentists suggest braces to kids of that age range. After all, TMJ is a very serious ailment, as it has no actual cure – only prevention and work-arounds, apparently.

  • Diana

    Dr Garry Smith Started Casey early and her teeth are looking great! Glad we did not wait, I have read about having teeth pulled and moving the front can cause TMJ, I actually have a few friends who developed TMJ from it. Way to go Dr Gary Smith!!!

  • Orthodontist Las Vegas

    The early intervention of an orthodontist takes advantage of the still growing bones of the jaw and pending eruption of the permanent teeth.

  • Kansas City Orthodontist

    I am curious to see whether or not a child who has taken advantage of preventative orthodontic treatments has any issues with alignment later on in life or if the intervention techniques had a permanent and lasting impact on the teeth.