Is There Help Before Braces? by KoalaKIDZzz®
Why You Need to Know Before Getting Braces.
Most parents think that braces are the only option for a child with crooked teeth, but braces may not address all the issues associated with growth and development. Crooked teeth may be a symptom of an underlying problem with your child’s bone growth and facial development. Other symptoms of growth issues include mouth breathing, trouble with tongue positioning while swallowing, an imbalanced lip position, thumb sucking, or lip biting. The good news is that there’s more that can be done to encourage healthy facial structure- There is help before braces!
What’s the Problem?
Many people view misaligned teeth and facial profiles as primarily cosmetic issues. However, underdeveloped facial bones can cause a child to have a narrow airway, which can negatively impact two functions that are essential to human survival: breathing and sleeping.
Sleep Related Breathing Disorder (SRBD) is a common term used for difficulty breathing during sleep. Symptoms of SRBD include: snoring, mouth breathing, ADHD, chronic allergies, crooked teeth, restless sleeping, nightmares, bedwetting, daytime tiredness and irritability. The good news is that often these symptoms are reduced or eliminated by correcting bad habits like mouth breathing and improper tongue positioning all while guiding the growth of the facial bones during sleep.
What many parents don’t realize is that much of a child’s physical development is carried out during the hours of sleep. Insufficient sleep can therefore lead to a myriad of problems.
How Can a Parent be Proactive?
As parents, we can take action and have our children screened for SRBD, misaligned teeth or other oral-facial problems. Often parents wait to be told that their child needs braces; however, while braces can effectively realign teeth, they aren’t always the complete solution.
If your child is between the ages of 2 and 14, and exhibits any of the symptoms listed above, now is the time for evaluation. When a child is age 2, their face is 50% developed. By the time they are age 12, it is 90% developed. We have a window of time where we can guide their growth to improve the patient’s dentition, their profile, and improve their airway.
Koala KIDZzz® offers a series of removable, soft mouthguards that are worn while the child sleeps and grows. These promote correct oral habits, proper airway and facial development. In addition, with proper growth of the arches, the teeth will often come in straight, reducing the amount of time needed for braces or even eliminating the need for braces all together!
We can change a child’s future for the better in so many ways. By guiding the growth and opening the airway during the critical growth years, we can also reduce or eliminate a lifetime struggle with sleep disordered breathing and TMJ disorders.
If your child is struggling, contact us today to set up a complimentary screening appointment for your child and discover options you can live with! Our passionate team is ready to care for you. To learn more about Koala KIDZzz® Pediatric Airway Development or to set up an appointment at the Koala® Center For Sleep & TMJ Disorders, visit koalakidzzz.com.