Dr. Gibbs has been creating beautiful, attractive, “Happy Smiles” in Huntington for over 25 years and has thousands of happy, smiling patients. Since completing his orthodontic residency at Columbia University, Dr. Gibbs has dedicated himself to exclusive practice of the highest quality orthodontic care as well as educating the next generation of dentists and orthodontists.
The American Academy of Orthodontics recommends all children get a check-up with an orthodontic specialist no later than age 7. Here’s Why:
- Orthodontists can spot subtle problems with jaw growth and emerging teeth while some baby teeth are still present.
- While your child’s teeth may appear to be straight, there could be a problem that only an orthodontist can detect.
- A check-up may reveal that your child’s bite is fine, or the orthodontist may identify a developing problem but recommend monitoring the child’s growth and development. Then, if indicated, treatment will begin at the appropriate time for the child. In other cases, the orthodontist might find a problem that can benefit from early treatment.
- Early treatment may prevent or intercept more serious problems from developing and may make treatment at a later age shorter and less complicated. In some cases, the orthodontist will be able to achieve results that may not be possible once the face and jaws have finished growing.
- Through an early orthodontic evaluation, you’ll be giving your child the best opportunity for a healthy, beautiful smile.
Early treatment may give your orthodontist the chance to:
- Guide jaw growth
- Lower the risk of trauma to protruded front teeth
- Correct harmful oral habits
- Improve appearance
- Guide permanent teeth into a more favorable position
- Create a more pleasing arrangement of teeth, lips and face
- Early/late loss of baby teeth
- Difficulty chewing and/or biting
- Mouth breathing
- Your child continues to suck his or her thumb after age 5
- Protruding upper front teeth
- Teeth that don’t come together at all
- Shifting of the jaw when your child opens or closes the mouth (crossbites)
- Crowded front teeth
**If your child is older than 7, it’s certainly not too late for a check-up. Because patients differ in both physiological development and treatment needs, the orthodontist’s goal is to provide each patient with the most appropriate treatment at the most appropriate time.
EARLY ORTHODONTIC TREATMENT FOR CHILDREN
Often times, many problems can be successfully treated in one stage. If Dr Gibbs recommends early treatment, his goals for this phase are limited and geared towards preventing harm to adult teeth and gums, and normalizing dental eruption and growth problems.
Early treatment, also known as Phase I, typically begins around age 8 or 9. Phase II (full braces) could begin around age 11 or when the permanent teeth are
WHAT CAUSES ORTHODONTIC PROBLEMS, AND HOW WILL EARLY TREATMENT BENEFIT MY CHILD?
Orthodontic problems are usually inherited, caused by injury to the mouth, or early/late loss of baby teeth, or thumb-sucking habits. Most children lose all their baby teeth by age 13. By the end of their teen years, the jaw bones mature and stop growing. Early intervention can mean more treatment options when ready for full braces and can help prevent unnecessary dental procedures as an adult. The most common possible early treatments include palate expanders, lingual arches, and underbite correction.
Phase I Treatment:
The palatal expander “expands” (or widens) your upper jaw by putting gentle pressure on your upper molars each time an adjustment is made. Your orthodontist will instruct you about when and how to adjust your expander. When you achieve the desired expansion, you will wear the appliance for several months to solidify the expansion and to prevent regression
Phase II Treatment:
Traditional metal braces are the most common type of braces used today. They are smaller and more comfortable than ever before and constructed of high-grade space age metal alloys. With metal braces, you have the option of adding colored elastics (rubber bands) for a more unique and colorful smile.
Clear appliances; use a series of invisible, removable, and comfortable aligners to straighten your teeth. No one can tell you are wearing these aligners because they are invisible! Invisalign aligners are removable so you are not limited in what you can eat and drink during treatment. Plus… brushing and flossing are less of a hassle. The aligners are comfortable and have no metal to cause mouth abrasions during treatment.