child braces best pediatric dentist calgary

How Do I Know If My Child Will Need Braces?

Children’s teeth go through varying developmental stages. They lose baby teeth and then grow into adult ones to replace them. 

Yet, when these teeth erupt, they can be misaligned. Misaligned teeth can lead to various oral health issues for your child unless addressed sooner – which is usually treated with braces. 

But how can you tell if your child’s teeth are misaligned to warrant braces? 

See if your child might need braces by learning what can cause misaligned teeth before booking an appointment with a pediatric dentist in Calgary

Signs to Look Out for According to a Calgary Pediatric Dentist

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Early Development Signs

A child losing their baby teeth for the first time is a normal part of development. The only concern a parent might have during this time is reminding their child to put their tooth underneath their pillow for the tooth fairy. Though what’s important for parents to know is when their child loses their baby teeth. Commonly, it’s expected for baby teeth to come in during the ages of one to three. When baby teeth fall out, that’s usually around the age of six, while all baby teeth should be gone and replaced with adult teeth by around the age of 12-13. However, early or late loss of baby teeth can lead to needing braces. So, if your child has experienced early or late baby teeth loss, it’s best to anticipate they might need braces. 

Certain Habit Signs 

Certain habits your child might have them wearing braces in the future. Thankfully, unlike developmental signs, you can have some control in helping to reduce your child’s chances of needing braces. 

Here are a few habits below that can create orthodontic issues:

  • Thumb sucking: Prolonged thumb sucking past the age of two to four causes teeth misalignment. 
  • Mouth breathing: Misalignment occurs since mouth breathing affects the development of your jaw & position of teeth. 
  • Problems with chewing/biting: If your child is struggling to chew or bite their food, it can mean they have misaligned teeth. Common signs are if food is left in the mouth, falls out of their mouth, or they’re slowly & improperly chewing and eating. 

If your child experiences any of these habits, consult your pediatric dentist on what you can do to rectify them and hopefully prevent needing braces. 

Clear Visual Signs 

Of all the signs your child needs braces, these are the most obvious. They’re rather hard not to overlook. Some parents might find their child’s crooked teeth cute. Unfortunately, this misplaced sentiment can harm a child’s oral health. Overlapping and crowded teeth make regular oral hygiene more difficult and lead to dental diseases like gingivitis. Braces will reduce those chances and leave them with a better, straighter smile. Beyond crooked teeth, having a misaligned jaw and improper bite leads to needing braces. 

Here are common bites that would need correcting with braces:

  • Overbite: when the upper teeth jut outward and do not overlap properly with the lower teeth.
  • Underbite: where the lower just outward does not coincide properly with the upper teeth.
  • Crossbite: where the teeth do not overlap correctly.
  • Open bite: where there is a gap between the upper and lower front teeth, even when the mouth is closed.

If your child exhibits any of these signs, it would be best to book a pediatric dentist appointment to confirm whether your child needs braces or not.

Visiting a dentist shouldn’t be a scary experience for children, and Happy Trails Children’s Dentistry is here to make sure that children feel safe and excited about their regular checkups. Happy Trails is a professional pediatric dentistry proudly serving south Calgary, and we have a goal of creating an inviting and comfortable space for children to receive the best care available. With our fantastic dentist, Dr. Sam, our young patients in Calgary will always have a positive dental experience!