Malocclusions are fairly common in children (as well as adults). While some malocclusions are so minor that no treatment would provide a demonstrable benefit, serious malocclusions may require intervention in the form of appliances such as braces.
For this reason, regular Orthodontic checkups are critical (no later than age 7) because they provide an opportunity for an Orthodontic professional to spot small problems before they become big ones. During an exam, Orthodontist may be able to determine if the child's jaws are growing properly and at the same rate.
Orthodontists employ a wide variety of "growth modification" techniques to help nature correct problems as your child grows. Orthodontic appliances can do wonders as your child develops. For example, an appliance may stave off problems with an upper or lower jaw that isn't growing at the same rate as the other, or correct problems that are creating difficulties with chewing or swallowing. Whatever the cause, orthodontic treatment during your child's development will reap substantial dividends in adult life, including avoidance of extraction of permanent teeth and possible surgery, improved oral health and improved self-esteem.
Keep in mind that orthodontic treatment involves a firm commitment from the child, as well as the parent. The kinds of changes such treatment is designed for sometimes take years to fully realize their benefit. Also bear in mind that even the most dedicated commitment is no guarantee of permanent results. Nature sometimes has a way of taking over, and in limited cases, relapses can occur later on.
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