Functional Jaw Orthopaedics simply means changing the size, shape and relationship of the jaws in order to create symmetry. Most jaw growth (80%) occurs by the age of 6/7. Dental Orthopaedics work within the jaw growth phase to increase tongue and airway space. When the mouth is too small, early action should be taken to increase the space for the teeth and the tongue.
Early intervention with Orthopaedics will give the best chance of the ideal result and although patients are able to be treated at any age, those with available growth (children at the age of 6/7) will be in an advantageous position.
Orthopaedics will help permanent teeth grow into the right places, reducing and in most cases eliminating altogether the need for extractions. Orthopaedic treatment.
The exact type of treatment and appliance required to correct the problem will depend upon the information gathered from the analysis which follows the initial consultation, when all required data has been collected (e.g. impressions of your child's teeth).
Orthopaedics will most commonly use the following types of appliances:
These types of appliances are used during the first phase of orthopaedic treatment and are normally removable and are made of a plastic plate or metal skeleton with wires attached.
They will usually have an expanding gear in the plate, which is activated as prescribed, to encourage the growth of the jaws.
Functional appliances are used during the second phase of orthopaedic treatment if required.
They are designed to correct jaws that are growing incorrectly by working with the growth of the patient's jaws and facial muscles.
Orthopaedics will often be combined with a final phase of orthodontic treatment and can also reduce the time required to wear fixed braces or other orthodontic appliances.
However orthopaedic therapy may eliminate the need for orthodontic appliances completely as the permanent teeth are sometimes correctly aligned.
Why choose orthopaedics?
- Reduce or eliminate the need for extractions
- Improve your child's smile – People with nice, broad smiles tend to smile more often!
- Give a more balanced bite and jaws
- Correct small problems before they may get any bigger – Prevention is better than cure!
- Preserve or gain space for erupting permanent teeth
- Simplify and shorten treatment with orthodontic braces