8 Ways You Can Prevent Serious Orthodontic Issues for Your Child

As a parent, you strive to protect your child in every way. Healthy diet, playing and exercising, teaching good habits – these are all part of raising healthy children and giving them the tools to continue to grow into healthy adults. As baby teeth come in, you’ll begin teaching your child good oral hygiene skills such as proper teeth brushing – but good oral health actually starts earlier than this! Read on to learn how you can keep your child’s smile healthy and prevent the development of severe orthodontic issues.


A calming soothing technique, the prolonged use of pacifiers can cause misalignment of baby teeth. Since baby teeth help guide the entrance of permanent teeth, this can lead to crooked adult teeth and even misaligned jaws or narrowing of the palate. Because of this, it’s best to have them weaned from this habit before age 2.

Thumb Sucking

When a child sucks their thumb, they are not only exerting sucking pressure on their teeth, but their thumb is putting pressure on them as well. This can lead to protruding teeth, misaligned bites, or a narrow palate. To prevent orthodontic damage, this habit should be broken before your child is kindergarten-aged.

Nail Biting

Aside from being an unsanitary habit, nail-biting can cause weakened, cracked, chipped, or lost teeth. It’s usually a symptom of underlying issues such as stress, anxiety, or even boredom, so it’s important to address these issues and break this habit as early as possible.

Mouth Breathing

Mouth breathing can be a symptom of bigger issues like a narrowed palate (which, as mentioned above, can be caused by thumb sucking or pacifier use). An early diagnosis can help prevent long-term sleep or dental issues from developing.

Use a Mouthguard

When playing sports, especially contact sports, your child must wear a mouthguard to protect their teeth from potential damage from falls and collisions.

Teeth Spacing

Because teeth fall out and come in at varying rates, keep an eye on the spacing of your child’s teeth to make sure they don’t become crowded or overly spaced. Catching this early helps correct the issue more quickly and easily.

Good Oral Hygiene

Instilling good oral hygiene habits early is imperative to ensure your child has the tools and knowledge to maintain a life-long strong, healthy smile.

Schedule Your Child’s First Orthodontist Visit

Because developing orthodontic issues aren’t always easy to spot, your child needs to see an orthodontist early. The ADA recommends seeing an orthodontist for the first time by age 7. By doing so, you can ensure issues are caught and addressed before they develop into more severe problems.

Early Treatment with your Portsmouth, RI Orthodontics Provider

If you’re looking for quality orthodontics in Bristol RI or Portsmouth, RI for your child, then look no further than Jaffe Orthodontics. Parents can rest assured that our friendly, professional staff will help make your child feel welcomed and safe. Contact us today to set up your child’s early treatment appointment, we can’t wait to meet you!

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