How can you tell if your kid has orthodontic problems or if they will need braces? The best way is to bring them in for their first orthodontic checkup no later than age 7. On top of that, as a parent, it’s a good idea to keep an eye out for common issues that may develop as your child grows. What are some of the most common orthodontic problems in growing kids? Here’s a quick guide on what to look out for.
9 Common Orthodontic Problems in Growing Kids
1. Crossbite of front teeth. Some of the bottom front teeth overlap the top front teeth when biting.
2. Crossbite of back teeth. One or more top teeth are biting to the inside of the bottom teeth.
3. Crowding. There is not enough space between individual teeth, because the dental arch is too small.
4. Open bite. The front teeth do not meet when the back teeth are closed.
5. Protrusion. The front teeth stick out too far beyond the bottom teeth.
6. Deep bite. Also known as overbite. The front teeth overlap the bottom teeth when the back teeth are closed.
7. Underbite. The bottom teeth sit in front of the top teeth when the back teeth are closed.
8. Spacing. There is excessive space between individual teeth.
9. Oral habits. Bad oral habits include sucking on fingers or thumbs, as well as prolonged sucking on objects like pacifiers, bottles, and sippy cups.
For more information on orthodontic problems caused by thumbsucking and pacifiers—as well as tips that may help prevent some of the most common orthodontic problems in growing kids—read our previous post on How to Prevent Braces from an Early Age.
Remember: A certified orthodontist, like Dr. Dougherty in St. Louis, is the most qualified person to diagnose both rare and common orthodontic problems in growing kids. She will be able to detect subtle issues and recommend the best course of treatment for your child.