It is not always obvious when your child’s bite is not developing correctly. That is why it is so important that they should receive a thorough orthodontic examination at around the age of six to potentially reveal any developing problems with tooth misalignment or malocclusion.
Even though it is not always possible for you to detect changes in your child’s bite, there are still some signposts that can indicate that everything is not well. Your child’s baby teeth should begin giving way to permanent teeth that emerge between the ages of six and eight. When these permanent teeth are erupting, they should fit snugly next to each other without large gaps or being crowded together in a crooked way. Your child’s upper teeth should fit correctly over lower teeth when their jaws are closed.
Bite problems are sometimes due to jaw injuries. They are often caused by numerous factors. The cause may be genetics, the environment, or both. A child’s bite can change as they grow.
When children are still sucking their thumbs or fingers after the age of five, their risk of developing problems with their bite increases. Those with a tiny space between baby teeth also have a greater chance of developing malocclusion. The emergence of the permanent teeth can lead to problems with a child’s bite since permanent teeth need more space due to their relatively large size.
Things To Look Out For
If the appearance of your child’s teeth is abnormal, they may have a problem with their bite known as malocclusion. Some abnormalities that you should look out for include:
Underbite: As mentioned earlier, your child’s front teeth should be covering lower teeth when jaws are closed. The reverse situation occurs with an under bite: lower teeth appear in front of upper teeth. Another problem can occur when upper teeth are covering lower teeth to an excessive degree.
Open bite: This abnormality develop when a gap forms between upper and lower front teeth when the jaws are closed. Thumb sucking can cause this problem due to excessive pressure on the front teeth, causing them to form in an overly forward position, leading to bottom front teeth being forced further back.
Crossbite: This is an abnormal bite that develops when some teeth do not properly fit over their opposing teeth, while some other teeth fit properly. A crossbite can be found anywhere in the child’s mouth. One common development is when upper front teeth do not fit properly with lower front teeth, although the back teeth are normally situated. The reverse can also occur.
Misalignments, abnormal eruptions: In some cases, upper teeth may be aligning in an overly forward position, which is commonly called protrusion. Malocclusion occurs when lower teeth, or the actual jaw, develops too far back. Another situation can occur when a permanent tooth deviates from its correct position since another tooth is out of position or not sequenced properly.
If you are noticing any of these symptoms occurring with your child’s bite, you should schedule a full examination with Dr. Omar Issa, the Board Certified Orthodontist at Kidzania. When detected early, we can provide treatment to reduce or eliminate the problem.