FAQs: 
Your child’s 
orthodontic treatment

Does my child need orthodontic treatment? When is the right time to start treatment? What are the options? And what is involved? GRAHAME DUTTON of Duxton Dental answers some of the most common questions parents have about their child/ren’s potential orthodontic treatment.

Shouldn’t I wait until my child is a teenager before they have orthodontic treatment?
It is commonly thought that you are best to wait until all your child’s baby teeth have fallen out before beginning orthodontic treatment. But in some cases, starting treatment as early as 8-9 years old is very beneficial. So it makes sense to assess your child at that young age to intercept some problems early on. This may be to develop young jaws to make room for incoming adult teeth or to prevent pre-existing bite issues from becoming worse. Occasionally early treatment prevents the need for teenage braces or makes that treatment phase shorter.

Why do you take x-rays to do an orthodontic assessment of my child’s teeth?
We often take a jaw scan x-ray at the 8-9 year old assessment to check for missing teeth, impacted teeth, or to check for any pathology. We need this information so there are no surprises later on in treatment. If we know the issues early on we can guide tooth eruption, growth or development. This can lead to decreased treatment times and less costs in the long run.

Is Invisalign suitable for children?
Two new initiatives, called Invisalign Teen and Invisalign First, have been specifically designed to correct issues in 8-12 year olds who still have baby teeth present. As a child grows, their smile grows with them.

Compliance with these removable appliances is proving excellent, even in quite young patients – it is much easier to keep the teeth clean than with conventional braces and it is better for contact sports as a normal mouthguard can be worn. And the kids love that there are no food restrictions whereas there are with conventional orthodontic braces
and wires.

We also treat early where the teeth don’t look great in the smile.
The psychological trauma of poorly positioned teeth can be significant. Straightening the smile early can be life changing to kids who are getting teased or have low self- image due to their teeth.

Grahame Dutton and wife Christine Duxbury established Duxton Dental in 1996. Their team of dental surgeons have an avowed commitment to researching and implementing new technologies and techniques to provide optimal dental care that is minimally invasive and that will stand the test of time.

duxtondental.co.nz