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Does My Child Need Braces? 5 Signs to Look For

Orthodontic treatment can help your child enjoy a brighter and healthier smile as well as improve their self-esteem. If you are wondering how you would know whether they need orthodontic treatment or not so you can book an appointment with their orthodontist right away, read on. Outlined are five signs that show your kid needs braces, like the estimated 3.9 million children who are orthodontic patients in the United States.

1. Their Teeth Seem Crooked

If your child’s teeth look crooked when you look at them, then this is the most obvious sign that they can benefit from getting braces. The same goes for if they have large gaps between each tooth or the teeth are too close together. Each year, over 3.5 million kids and teenagers in America start to wear braces and this shows that more people are seeing their benefits. Help your child correct their smile and grow up to have a smile that they are proud to show by taking them to get braces if they need them.

2. They Grind Their Teeth

Another sign that your child needs braces is if they grind their teeth a lot, especially at night. This may be as a result of pain or discomfort in their mouth which they are trying to ease. Grinding teeth is something that you need to put an immediate stop to because it can wear the teeth down and lead to other issues in the future. If you have noticed that your child grinds their teeth, take them to the orthodontist for an immediate evaluation.

3. They Have Difficulty Chewing and Speaking

While children will generally have different abilities at varying times and learn new things at different paces, it’s important to know that, beyond a certain point, you may need to be concerned. This is especially true when it comes to chewing and speaking. When you find that your child cannot chew comfortably and has trouble forming words that they know when they speak, it’s a good idea to have them evaluated by an orthodontist. If they don’t like the idea of braces too much, remind them that more than four million people in the United States wear braces, with just 25% of them being adults.

4. Their Jaw Makes Unusual Sounds

Yet another sign that you may need to head to a dentist with your child is if their jaw makes unusual sounds when it moves. These include clicks and squeaks when they chew or speak or make other movements with their jaws. Even if they can feel no pain when these sounds are heard, it’s a good idea to have them evaluated to eliminate the risk of trouble in the future. These sounds may be a result of their jaw being too small or otherwise misaligned in some way. An orthodontist will be best placed to analyze your child’s jaw and offer you a way forward.

5. They Have Irregular Loss of Baby Teeth

Finally, if your child has been losing their baby teeth in an irregular way, this could lead to issues. This is because if they take too long, they could make it impossible for permanent teeth to find room. If some fall out too early, this can lead to excessive and uneven spacing. Make sure that none of these issues arise in your child’s future by taking them to their dentist as soon as you realize that their baby teeth are not falling out consistently.

Don’t hesitate to see the orthodontist if your child is showing any of these signs. Getting them fixed early enough could help them enjoy a future of bright smiles without the numerous oral health issues that might plague them otherwise.