Interceptive orthodontics is a ground-breaking early intervention that provides extra help to at least 20% of children needing orthodontic treatment. Interceptive treatment has proven to significantly improve facial symmetry, tooth, and jaw development, and, as a result, over all self-confidence.
Interceptive orthodontics work with the body’s natural growth processes. Like regular orthodontics, the goal is to improve your oral function and appearance, but since interceptive orthodontics use a variety of techniques to influence the growth and development of your teeth and jaw, the treatment is most
effective if done before the onset of puberty while regular orthodontics can be done at any age.
Early treatment, meaning interceptive orthodontics before the jaw has finished growing, allows for results that are near impossible to achieve at an older age without more invasive, complicated procedures, such as jaw surgery or teeth extractions. In fact, we recommend, along with the American Association of Orthodontists, that all kids come in for orthodontic screenings beginning at age 7.
We use palatal expanders to create more room in an overcrowded jaw as opposed to the more invasive approach of extracting teeth. We also use some of our appliances to treat serious malocclusions (bad bites). They promote or restrict jaw growth when the top and bottom jaws do not develop at the same
The length of a treatment depends on what needs to be done. Your child may need to wear a palatal expander or other appliance for 6-12 months and then a retainer. We may place a space maintainer that needs to stay put for a period of months, holding place for permanent teeth to come in. Once your child’s jaw has stopped growing, there is no longer a need for interceptive orthodontic treatment.
It is quite common to follow interceptive treatment with regular braces. The good news is that interceptive orthodontics often shortens the period of time that braces need to be worn.