When should the first orthodontic visit take place?
At six years of age, an orthodontic visit aims to intercept eventual imbalances in the growth of the teeth and/or bone. If not corrected in time, they will be much harder to fix in the future. Together with the orthodontist, the role of the pediatrician is crucial for identifying several illnesses at this young age (including adenoidal hypertrophy and other causes of breathing difficulty, short lingual frenulum) or any bad habits (such as sucking the thumb, using a soother/pacifier, or atypical swallowing that may cause problems in the development of the child’s bones, teeth and posture.
Orthodontics for children and adolescents: which treatments are recommended, and when?
Interceptive orthodontic treatment: From 6 years of age up to the complete development of permanent teeth (12-13 years). Treatment can be Functional, Mixed, or Fixed, and aims to intercept any dentoskeletal problems the child might have in order to guide the function of the teeth, and consequently their growth, towards a range considered normal.
Fixed or Mixed orthodontic treatment: After permanent teeth have fully developed (from 12-13 years of age and upwards). It is used to finish off or refine any interceptive treatments or to fix any imbalances in the number of teeth (oral agenesis or supernumerary teeth) or in their alignment and spacing (teeth crowding), or treat any dentoskeletal imbalances that were diagnosed too late during adolescence.
It is true that it’s better to wait until all permanent teeth have emerged before starting orthodontic treatment?
No. If an orthodontic problem is left untreated during growth it will make things even worse later on. The body will learn to accept the malocclusion as normal and will hence make the problem permanent by adapting the bone function and growth around it. In many cases an operation carried out at an early stage will achieve a result that is no longer possible if treatment is performed when the growth is complete.
Does starting orthodontic treatment too early mean that it will last for many years?
No. Depending on the specific case, the specialist can recommend to operate immediately (early interceptive treatment) or to keep the child under watch before carrying out the operation later on (with regular check-ups every 3-6 months). In the event of an early operation, the orthodontic treatment will finish with the correction of the existing problem, and the patient will be followed up to permanent dentition by means of regular check-ups and treatment of any further problems.
What is postural gnathology?
Postural gnathology deals with diagnosing and treating disorder in the occlusion and temporomandibular articulation (biting action) by understanding its relationship with the whole organism, but especially with the muscles and articulation of the head, neck and shoulders, with the mandibular position and the overall bodily posture. In other words, it means treating the masticatory system in a specialized way without ever forgetting that it is forms part of an ensemble of body and mind.
Orthodontics for adults: which kind of treatment is possible and when?
If treatment is recommended, adults of any age can benefit from an invisible orthodontic treatment (Invisalign) without having to suffer any aesthetic inconvenience: malposition, crowding, spacing, pre-prosthetic movement, etc. can always be corrected in a completely organic and functional perspective.