AAO RECOMMENDS ORTHODONTIC CHECK UP NO LATER THAN AGE 7
When most people think of orthodontics, they think of teenagers. In fact most orthodontic treatment begins between the ages of 9 and 14. Dr. Merna Tajaddod in Palo Alto, CA cares for teens of course, but encourages parents to come in for a complimentary consultation when your child is 6 or 7 years of age.
Dr. Merna Tajaddod in Palo Alto, CA follows the orthodontic advice of The American Association of Orthodontists as they recommend that every child have a check-up with an orthodontic specialist no later than age 7. Your dentist or hygienists may also recommend your child see Dr. Tajaddod in Palo Alto at this early age for a developing malocclusion (bad bite), such as an under bite.
There is a certain window of opportunity to correct some of these malocclusions. At this age the jaws are still growing. There are orthodontic appliances that utilize this growth period to help with jaw size discrepancies. In most cases early treatment can reduce the need for extractions of permanent teeth and can make Phase 2 treatment and full braces, much easier. Palate Expander: For most Phase I cases Dr. Tajaddod uses an appliance called the expander. The "Palate Expander" is a custom fit appliance design to widen your upper teeth. It fits in the roof of the mouth and is cemented to the upper side teeth. The expander will stay in during the expansion procedure and for an estimated three-month stabilization period following the expansion. Most patients will have the expander in place for four to six months. It will take at least two to three days for you to become comfortable to your new expander.
The expander has a center screw that works in a similar fashion as a car jack. Turning the screw causes the appliance and the upper dental arch to widen (view the videos below for a demonstration). While the placement of the expander will be uncomfortable, the actual turning of the screw should not hurt.
If the expander ever causes pain when it is turned, immediately stop turning and notify the office. In younger patient, a space may develop between the two upper front teeth. This is normal and means the appliance is functioning correctly. The space can sometimes get quite large, as much as 7mm, and is an indicator of a good result. Please do not be alarmed by the space, it is temporary, and will start to close as soon as the expander is fully opened.
Now,what are the benefits of expansion? It created space for crowded front teeth. It corrects a cross-bite of the back teeth, if one was initially presented. It improves the width of the smile and it's appearance.
Merna Tajaddod Orthodontics is Located in Palo Alto, CA and proudly serving orthodontic treatment for the children in Palo Alto, Menlo Park, Mountain View, Los Altos and the surrounding residence.