There are many reasons why a child might have overcrowded teeth, but one in particular requires close coordination between an orthodontist and an oral surgeon. Cleft palates have many implications for a child’s oral health. We can provide crucial treatment at Dr. Cynthia Wong’s Orland Park office, and we want parents to understand how orthodontics will make a positive impact on their child.
Overcrowded, crooked teeth are difficult to clean. Children who have cleft palates suffer from especially high rates of tooth decay and are often unable to brush and floss thoroughly on their own until they are about nine or ten. Tooth decay is especially devastating during a child’s early years, since pain can disrupt their sleep, eating, and speech development. The misaligned teeth themselves can also make speaking difficult.
Oral surgeons may treat children by grafting bone tissue into the gap in their upper palates. But first, they often require the assistance of an orthodontist to use braces to move the child’s teeth out of the way. Children with cleft palates are usually referred to orthodontists early in life and aveolar bone grafts typically take place between the ages of eight and twelve. If a child is missing a permanent tooth, we may use braces to move their teeth to create room for an artificial crown.