Children’s Braces Phase 1: Interceptive Treatment and What to Expect
If you have been told your child needs braces, you probably have a lot of questions about children’s braces and what to expect from each step of the process. In this blog post, we’ll explore the first phase, known as “Interceptive Treatment.” By taking some of the mystery out of the process, you and your child will both be more confident and comfortable.
Here are some of the most frequently-asked questions we hear at FUNtastic Pediatric Dental and Orthodontics about phase one of the process for children’s braces:
Q: Is my child old enough to start the interceptive treatment process?
If your child is between 6-8 years old, he/she is old enough to start the Interceptive Treatment phase. The American Association of Orthodontists actually recommends that children undergo their first orthodontic evaluation no later than age seven. That’s important because the first adult molars should erupt by that point. An orthodontist can evaluate and monitor any potential issues so they can be treated as early as possible, helping your child be confident in their smile.
Q: What are some warning signs that can signal a need for interceptive treatment?
The most common orthodontic problem is front teeth that protrude excessively, commonly referred to as “buck teeth.”
Another common problem that can signal a need for interceptive treatment is an open bite. If your child can stick his or her tongue between the upper and lower teeth when the back teeth are closed, he or she has an open bite.
Interceptive treatment can also help with other common bite problems including a deep bite, where the upper teeth overlap the lower teeth too much, an under bite where the upper teeth fit inside the lower teeth, or when the midlines of the front top and bottom teeth are not aligned.
Q: How long does phase one last?
The interceptive treatment phase typically lasts between 12-18 months.
Q: What does interceptive treatment do?
Interceptive treatment helps create room in your child’s mouth for their teeth, and helps create facial symmetry. In addition, the risk of trauma and tooth removal is also lessened. Interceptive treatment can also reduce the overall time your child will need braces.
It’s important to understand that interceptive treatment does not necessarily eliminate the need for later orthodontic treatment for your child’s permanent teeth.
Q; What does interceptive treatment involve?
Interceptive treatment could include a variety of orthodontic appliances including upper braces, a tongue crib, a space maintainer, a rapid palatal expander or other non-brace options designed to help give your child a more beautiful smile.
Q: What happens after phase one?
After phase one but before phase two, your child will use a retainer, which can help guide the eruption of their permanent teeth. Then, every 3-6 months, your child will visit us to help us monitor their progress.
Schedule Your Child’s Appointment Today!
At FUNtastic Pediatric Dental, our goal is to provide a pain-free and anxiety-free environment for your child, both for their routine dental care and their orthodontic needs. Contact us in Long Beach, CA to schedule your children’s braces evaluation appointment today. You can request an appointment online through our website, or call us at 562.912.2007.