Sometimes there are pressing issues with your child’s smile that need to be addressed sooner than later. Especially when waiting until they’re older to fix things can turn into a more expensive and involved ordeal. That’s where Phase 1 orthodontics from our Grand Rapids orthodontist comes into play.
Here’s what Phase 1 orthodontic treatment entails and when it’s recommended.
If deemed necessary, it’s best for children to start phase 1 treatment between the ages of 7 and 10. This timeframe falls right in the “mixed dentition phase” when your child is starting to lose baby teeth and gain permanent adult teeth.
Should there be any issues regarding the growth of the jaw or tooth development, Dr. Miller can more easily address them at this point. As your child ages, it becomes harder to correct problems of this nature without in-depth or lengthy procedures.
Once problems have been remedied and your child has lost most if not all of their baby teeth, they can move forward with Phase 2 orthodontic treatment but not before a designated resting period has finished. Unlike Phase 1, Phase 2 is designed to take not only function and bite into account, but appearance as well.
The length of Phase 1 treatment will ultimately vary for every patient. On average, the entire process can take anywhere from 9 to 18 months depending on the dental issues at hand. Dr. Miller will speak with you and your child during the initial consultation so you are both aware of any timelines.
To treat bite growth, aid jaw development, and guide erupting permanent teeth, it’s common for one or more of the following to be used in Phase 1 treatment:
We’ll want to check up on your child every 4 to 6 months as their smile changes. Dr. Miller will then discuss with you the possibility of placing metal braces, ceramic braces, or another form of orthodontia after all permanent teeth have appeared.
It is not unusual for children to require multiple phases of orthodontic treatment. While this may seem like extra work at the time, the culmination of Phase 1 and 2 should spare your child from worse oral complications down the road when they’re more difficult to treat.
By moving forward with a recommended Phase 1 orthodontic treatment plan, you are giving your child’s smile a better chance of success. Our orthodontist in Grand Rapids, MI, has worked with countless patients who required a multi-phase approach and has the knowledge needed to produce great results down the line. Request an appointment to have your child evaluated for braces today by calling Miller Orthodontics at (616) 942-9320.