What Is Interceptive Orthodontics and Why Is It Important?

December 1, 2020 | By Molarbear

Orthodontics is the treatment of malocclusions, and it involves the use of braces or aligners. The treatment can be used to correct wide gaps between teeth and misalignment of teeth. Interceptive orthodontics, on the other hand, is the act of addressing orthodontic problems earlier before they become more challenging to correct.

Interceptive orthodontics takes advantage of growing jaws to correct issues like overbites, crossbites, misalignments, and underbites before they get out of hand. By choosing interceptive orthodontics, you save a lot of money, which you would have used in later years for more extensive procedures that take a longer time to treat. In this blog, we will discuss this treatment in detail to help you make an informed decision.

Fast Facts about Interceptive Orthodontics

  • Interceptive orthodontics is not a substitute for comprehensive orthodontic treatment. However, it creates perfectly shaped arches for future teeth, prepares jaws for ideal growth, and reduces the need for tooth extraction in the future.
  • Interceptive orthodontics starts as early as seven years when the first set of primary molars erupts.
  • Comprehensive orthodontic treatment starts when a child is between 11 and 14 years for boys and between 12 and 15 for girls.
  • Interceptive orthodontics helps make comprehensive orthodontic treatment become less difficult for your child.
  • Interceptive orthodontics prevents impacted teeth.

Does My Child Need Interceptive Orthodontics?

The only way you will know if your child needs interceptive orthodontics in Houston, TX, is if you talk to a kids dentist near you. The pediatric dentist will assess your child and determine the need for the treatment. Some of the issues that might make your dentist settle for the treatment are:

  • Teeth overcrowding.
  • Underbites and overbites.
  • Misalignment of back teeth
  • The unevenness of the lower and upper jaw
  • Protruding teeth
  • Early loss of baby teeth.
  • Narrow dental arches as a result of the child sucking her thumb.

Interceptive orthodontics will correct these issues early and help prevent them from worsening. Sometimes, if the problems are extreme, even the second phase of orthodontic treatment may fail to correct them, hence the need for interceptive treatment when the jaws are still growing.

What Do Dentists Do for Interceptive Orthodontic Treatment?

Typically, a pediatric dentist will do the following during the treatment:

  • Maintain the space for permanent teeth.
  • Expand the upper jaw to correct crossbites.
  • Expand the jaws to create more space for the second phase of orthodontic treatment.
  • Stop a child’s behavior of sucking thumb and pacifier habits.
  • Remove specific over-retained baby teeth that may be on the way to perfect eruption of permanent teeth.
  • Reduce protrusions to correct overbites and reduce the risk of dental trauma.

How Long Does Interceptive Orthodontic Treatment Take?

Typically, your child will need to wear a specific device for a period of six to twelve months, depending on her dental problems. For example, your child may need to wear a palatal expander for 12 months and then wear a retainer for a period of time before the second phase of the orthodontic treatment.

If she is missing a few baby teeth, she will be required to wear a space maintainer until her permanent teeth erupt. Generally, interceptive orthodontic treatment ends when your child’s jaw stops growing.

Will My Child Still Wear Braces After Interceptive Treatment?

In most cases, your child will still need to wear braces during the second phase of the treatment. However, having an interceptive treatment reduces the time your child will need to wear the braces.

For example, your kid may need to wear braces for two years instead of the standard three if she gets an interceptive treatment. Also, interceptive care prevents many dental problems common in the future.

Interceptive Orthodontic Treatment: Wrapping Up

Interceptive treatment is often the first phase of orthodontic treatment usually carried out once a child develops her first set of molars at the age of seven. The treatment helps make malocclusion correction easier. Malocclusion affects one’s smile, speech, and bite. Correcting the problem as early as possible should always be the priority.

Molar Bear Pediatric Dentistry

If you are searching for Interceptive orthodontics near me, in Houston, TX, you are in the right place. With over 35 years of experience, you can count on us for exceptional services. Our clinic is kid-friendly, and we are here to provide your child with all the preventive care she needs. Book an appointment now.

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