March 13, 2024
5 Signs You Should Take Your Child to an Orthodontist

Many parents wonder when they should take their child to a pediatric orthodontist. Here are five signs that it might be time to schedule an appointment with Dr. Robert Haeger at Haeger Orthodontics.

  1. Early or Late Loss of Baby Teeth

If your child loses their baby teeth too early or too late, it could be a sign that orthodontic intervention is needed. The timing of tooth loss is crucial and can significantly impact the development of your child's mouth and jaw. Early or late loss may lead to crowding, misalignment, or improper spacing of permanent teeth. A pediatric orthodontist can help evaluate the need for interventions such as space maintainers or early orthodontic treatment to properly guide the growth and development of the jaw and permanent teeth.

  1. Difficulty in Chewing or Biting

Chewing and biting should be effortless. If your child is having difficulty or discomfort while eating, it may indicate a problem with their bite or jaw alignment. This issue could show up as avoiding certain types of food, complaining of pain during or after eating, or being disinterested in eating. A pediatric orthodontist can perform a comprehensive assessment to determine the root cause of the issue and recommend appropriate treatment options. These can range from braces to more specialized orthodontic appliances to correct the bite and alleviate discomfort.

  1. Crowded, Crooked, or Blocked Teeth

Overcrowded or crooked teeth can not only affect your child's smile but also their oral health. These issues can make cleaning teeth more challenging, leading to potential cavities and gum disease. Plus, crooked teeth can affect speech and chewing functionality. A pediatric orthodontist can provide solutions to these problems through various orthodontic treatments, ensuring an improved appearance and promoting better oral health and functionality.

  1. Jaws Shifting or Making Sounds

If your child's jaws shift, make sounds, or if they frequently bite their cheek or the roof of their mouth, it's a sign that something is not right. These symptoms could indicate a misaligned jaw, which can affect facial symmetry and lead to difficulties in eating and speaking. It's important to address these issues early to avoid more complex problems in the future. A pediatric orthodontist is equipped to diagnose and treat such conditions. They may recommend braces, aligners, or even orthognathic surgery in more severe cases.

  1. Thumb Sucking Past a Certain Age

While thumb sucking is normal for infants and toddlers, if the habit continues past a certain age, typically around the age of four, it can cause dental problems such as protruding front teeth, misaligned bite, or incorrect jaw development. Addressing this habit early is crucial to prevent long-term dental issues. 

Don’t Wait, Schedule an Appointment Today!

If your child is displaying any of these signs, it’s time to take action. Dr. Robert Haeger and the team at Haeger Orthodontics are here to guide you and your child through the process. With our expertise in pediatric orthodontics, we ensure a comfortable and effective treatment plan tailored to your child's needs. Reach out to us today at our Kent or Maple Valley, WA locations and let us help your child achieve a healthy, beautiful smile.

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