Children Orthodontic Care & Treatment in Gatineau-Ottawa

Interceptive (Early) Orthodontic Treatment for Children

Optimization & Prevention

At a young age, it is possible to create dramatic orthodontic and orthopedic changes in a quick and noninvasive manner since a great amount of growth – and thus potential for stable change – exists at this time; this is termed optimization. Moreover, by addressing developing problems before they worsen or become permanent, early intervention can also help avert the need for more complicated and invasive treatments such as jaw surgery and tooth extractions later in life; this is termed prevention.

Early interventions that optimize growth & development and/or prevent complex future problems are often referred to as Interceptive Care or Phase 1 Treatment.

Candidates for Childhood Orthodontic Care

Not all children require interceptive orthodontic treatment, but all children should be screened by an orthodontist no later than the age of 7 to see if they do. Indications for interceptive orthodontic treatment may include:

  • Severe crowding
  • Early tooth loss
  • Crossbite
  • Shifting of the lower jaw upon closure
  • Deep overbite
  • Unusual tooth eruption pattern or delays in tooth eruption
  • Impacted tooth
  • Tooth or jaw asymmetries
  • Open bite
  • Jaw size discrepancies
  • Habits
  • Airway/Breathing problems
  • Pronunciation problems
  • Chewing problems
  • Dissatisfactory with the appearance of the teeth, smile, or facial contours

When interceptive treatment is indicated, the goal is to quickly correct the problem to prevent it from getting worse or causing additional problems that are more difficult and complex to treat later on. Because not all the permanent teeth are present in childhood, however, it is expected that a second phase of orthodontic care to perfect the bite and smile will be needed during adolescence – this second phase of treatment is usually quite short since the teeth are generally quite close to where they should be thanks to the first phase of treatment

Types of Interceptive Care