Smiles for the Whole Family
Why should anyone think they’re too old or too young for orthodontic treatment? We all have mouths, we all have smiles, and we all sometimes need a little help keeping them at their best.
At Noble Orthodontics in Carrboro, we serve patients of all ages with the leading treatments and the latest technology.
Serving the Smallest Smiles
Early treatment can be a major leg up on difficulties related to tooth and bone development. That’s because Dr. Jeff and Dr. Tate can detect and potentially correct these issues much more easily while the problems are just getting started.
Misaligned jaws and certain issues that are seen in children may also be early signs of poor airways or unfavorable growth.
In early treatment, our focus at Noble Orthodontics is getting bone growth and development on track.
The Initial Examination
We love seeing children at any age when parents or the general dentist believe there is a problem. We prefer to see children by age seven, but we’re happy to see children of all ages — if nothing more than to meet them.
In many instances, Dr. Jeff or Dr. Tate will decide to monitor your child’s bone growth and development. If and when treatment is warranted, we review with the family whether the child is ready before discussing what treatment is best for your child.
When Earlier Treatment Is Better
All adult teeth appear in the mouth generally between the ages of 10 – 13. This will vary from patient to patient. By this age, the majority of bone growth is complete, and we can successfully start moving teeth.
It’s important to catch issues related to bone development at these early stages, as they can be much more difficult to treat later on. We use early treatment for:
Severe crossbite is a condition where the upper teeth close inside the lower teeth. We often treat crossbite with a device known as a palatal expander, which gradually widens the upper jaw.
This is especially effective when the jaw itself hasn’t fully developed. If we wait too long, we may need to consider additional, more extensive treatments to achieve the treatment goals.
Severe crowding occurs when the jaws are too small to hold all of the permanent teeth that are present. We might recommend either palatal expansion or tooth removal to ensure the smooth growth of your child’s adult teeth.
The more effectively we deal with crowding in early treatment, the easier traditional treatment during adolescence tends to be.
Correcting Bad Habits
Sometimes, your child’s habits can actually influence the development and function of their teeth, jaws, and mouth. If left unchecked, they can cause orthodontic issues later in life.
Some examples of these are persistent thumb sucking, tongue thrusting, and mouth breathing.
We use several different treatments to correct these conditions. The sooner we address these issues, the less likely they are to require future lengthy treatment.
Dr. Jeff and Dr. Tate are well-qualified to recognize and help mitigate any of these habits before they lead to orthodontic issues.
Protruding teeth, especially in front, can be prone to chips and fractures. They may also lead to issues with a child’s self-image.
A severe underbite caused by the lower jaw growing faster than the upper jaw can even result in serious bite problems.
Dr. Jeff and Dr. Tate can often correct these conditions during your child’s early developmental stages, sometimes avoiding later treatment altogether.
Orthodontics for Teens
Adolescence is by far the most common time for orthodontic treatment.
Once all adult teeth are present, we can start aligning the teeth and improving the bite and smile.
The earlier the better is often the case when it comes to orthodontic treatment. As we age, crowding increases, and we can start to see gums recede and other issues that were once minor become more pronounced and complex.
It’s easier to treat many orthodontic conditions during adolescence because the body is still in a stage of rapid growth. By combining orthodontics and appliances like palatal expanders, we stabilize bone growth and arrive at an attractive result.
If we wait until patients are older, the development of the bones of the face and jaw makes many issues much more difficult to treat. This can mean longer, more complex treatments.
Orthodontics for Adults
Orthodontic treatment is one the best investments you can make in your health and your appearance — at any age!
And as more and more adults seek orthodontic treatment for subtle or transformative changes, we find it more important than ever to offer effective and efficient treatment options specifically designed for our adult patients.
Dr. Jeff and Dr. Tate have plenty of experience treating adult patients. Our collaborative approach means they can develop customized treatment plans for you and your goals.
It also allows our team to work closely with your dental team, which always includes the general dentist and may involve other dental specialist(s).
Here are a few aspects of adult treatment that are important to appreciate:
- Since your teeth and jaws have stopped growing, Dr. Jeff and Dr. Tate can no longer take advantage of growth and dental development.
- We may need to consider periodontal (gum and bone) problems when planning treatment.
- Many adults have pre-existing restorations or desire new restorations to improve the appearance of their teeth.
- Many adults present with abnormal wear from their current bite or grinding/clenching.
Joint problems (TMD) or pain may exist.
These factors shouldn’t discourage any adult patients from seeking treatment. In fact, orthodontic treatment can often help reduce conditions in the mouth that may lead to tooth decay, gum and bone loss, irregular wear of the teeth, and joint problems.
Additionally, we can address jaw alignment and prepare your teeth and jaw bone structures for future restorations and/or implants.
Everyone Deserves to Smile
It’s never too late (or too early!) to realize the benefits of orthodontic treatment.