It is important to educate our patients’ parents on their child’s bite. They might not realize it, but their child’s bite can cause long-term complications. For example, a child’s teeth might appear straight and not need braces. However, there could be some problems lurking behind the surface that might require orthodontic treatment. Let’s take a look at some of the issues that might be associated with a child’s bite that can lead to long-term complications.
A problem with their bite
Knowing that a child has a problem with their bite is not easy to notice with the naked eye. Parents can detect the problem by paying attention to their child’s chewing habits with different types of foods.
Problems with a child’s bite are not always noticeable, but they do have consequences. If left uncorrected, an uneven bite can lead to various problems, including headaches, broken teeth or gum recession.
What leads to bite problems?
Genetics can be the culprit for a poor bite, but environmental causes can also play a role too. For example, if a child sucks on their thumb. Prolonged thumb sucking or the use of pacifiers beyond the age of 4 can increase the risk of altering the child’s bite.
Mouth breathing can also lead to a misaligned bite. The inability to breathe through their nose can be a major cause of growth-related problems. It happens mostly in children with precursors to sleep-disordered breathing, such as enlarged tonsils or adenoids, or even allergies.
If a child has damaged or has prematurely lost their baby teeth, it can also lead to bite irregularities. It is common to underestimate or undervalue the importance of baby teeth, but they can affect the bite in several ways.
It is important to educate parents on what to lookout for and when to bring their child in to examine their bite.