It is common knowledge to many parents that the care and keeping of a child’s teeth starts at an incredibly young age indeed. After all, the baby teeth should be wiped down with a damp washcloth at least on a daily basis. Once your child reaches their toddler years, it is common to allow them to begin to manipulate an appropriately sized toothbrush, though most dentists will recommend using toothpaste that does not have fluoride in it at least until your child reaches the age of two, when most dentists will give the all clear to make the switch.
Of course, regular dental visits are an important part of the dental health for any child – and really for any person, for that matter. These dental visits should be taking place at least twice throughout the year and in some cases, even more frequently than that. Ultimately, dentists can perform thorough examinations and educate on dental health and proper oral hygiene. They can also help to reduce the chances of dealing with cavities and tooth decay later on in life through the implementation of fluoride treatments and even x-rays, which can give them a better diagnostic look at things.
These regular dental visits can also pick up on the need for braces as the baby teeth fall out more and more rapidly and are replaced by adult teeth. Though the care and keeping of a child’s baby teeth is most certainly important for the overall health and well being of the adult teeth that come in during the later childhood years, even the most meticulous dental hygiene cannot always prevent the need for braces. After all, getting braces is quite hugely common indeed, no doubt about it.
If your child needs braces or some type of orthodontic care, it is likely that your family dentist will refer you to a pediatric orthodontist. The pediatric orthodontist is relatively common, as orthodontists of all kinds actually make up a full 6% of all dentists and dental professionals. A pediatric orthodontist can give specialized care that the typical family dentist, no matter how good of a dentist he or she might be, simply cannot. The pediatric orthodontist, for instance, will not only seek to straighten your child’s teeth for a more cosmetically ideal smile, but to align their jaw and their bite to prevent other and much more serious issues from developing later on.
When it comes to braces for kids, the pediatric orthodontist is likely to be relatively reserved in their approach. For instance, many a pediatric orthodontist will not want to apply braces of any kind before all of the baby teeth have fallen out and the permanent ones grown in, as this will give the pediatric orthodontist in question a more accurate idea of what they are working with and how they should proceed for the best results at the end of the day.
When your child’s pediatric orthodontist does decide that they are ready to apply braces to your child’s teeth, it is likely that they will use metal brackets, which are incredibly strong and powerful, thanks to the fact that the type of metal they are made from was actually first used by NASA, making it quite powerful indeed. However, metal brackets are not the only option. For older children or even adults who are looking to get braces – as up to one quarter of former braces havers will ultimately have to do, thanks to a lack of maintenance on the behalf of the patient (typically in the form of not wearing their retainer or retainers) – there are some more discrete options out there. Invisalign is by and large the most popular, and is a type of dental re-alignment tool that has been hugely successful for a great many people across the board. These invisible braces can certainly be ideal – or at least more ideal than the traditional and typical metal braces, after all – for those who have already entered, in some capacity, the professional world.
At the end of the day, the pediatric orthodontist is a medical professional who plays a very important role in the lives of many children.