The Australian Society of Orthodontists recommends that the appropriate time for a child’s first evaluation by an orthodontic specialist is at age 7.
Early treatment occurs when your child still has a mixture of primary and permanent teeth. The age that early treatment usually commences is between ages 7 to 10. Early treatment typically ranges from 6-12 months in duration and can often;
- reduce the need to remove permanent teeth later on;
- prevent more serious problems from occurring; AND
- decrease future treatment times making overall bite correction more economical.
The following are indications that a child may be a candidate for early orthodontic treatment:
- Early or late loss of their baby teeth (space maintainers)
- Difficulties chewing or biting
- The child is a thumb or finger sucker
- Mouth Breathing, Lisping
- Crowded teeth
- The jaws are not aligned
- Jaw and the teeth aren’t proportional to the face
If early interceptive treatment is required then Dr NICK is likely to do one of the following:
- Jaw correction (removable functional appliances);
- Regulate the arches (fixed and removable expansion appliances);
- Create space for crowded teeth (fixed and removable arch development appliances);
- Correct Thumb and Finger sucking habits (Deterrent appliances);
- Habit Correctors (Mouth Breathing, Lisping);
- Help improve minor speech problems (closing down anterior open bites);
- Smile Improvement (prevent teasing at school);
Two Phase Treatment
This specialised process combines initial guidance of facial development followed by subsequent teeth-straightening. The main reason that people opt for two phase treatment is to maximise the results, avoid future surgical intervention and achieve look that will remain stable throughout life.
Phase 1 – Foundation
Phase 1 is all about allowing the jaws to develop and improving the way that the jaws align. This works especially well for children because early stage detection can save time and money on treatment in the future. Before phase 2 can occur the mouth needs to rest and be monitored by Dr NICK to determine the start date of phase 2.
Phase 2 – Treatment and maintenance
This stage ensures that every tooth has an exact location in the mouth. In order for this to be achieved full upper and lower braces are usually fitted and remain on for an average of 12 months.
After the patient has their braces removed, then a retainer will be worn to maintain their new smile!
Interceptive treatment is often considered the first half of orthodontic treatment. Treatments vary from $900 – $2900. Your health fund can often cover most of this treatment cost. We will help you ascertain your health fund’s eligibility.
If your medical fees rise above a certain threshold in a year, you may be able to claim back some of these costs as a rebate from the Australian Tax Office. This is called the “Medical Expense Tax Rebate”. Orthodontic fees are counted as medical fees for the purposes of this rebate, which is calculated when you do your income tax return. To find out more about the rebate, and the current threshold, contact your accountant or the Australian Taxation Office.
Frequently Asked Questions
We will show you how to floss with braces and then you’ll be all ready to go!