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Early Intervention Orthodontics

Group of children smilingMany orthodontic concerns are preventable or more straightforward to correct, as long as you address them early. Early intervention orthodontics is a type of dentofacial orthopaedic therapy, which nudges growth patterns onto the right track.

Instead of correcting bite issues, orthopaedics works to prevent them. Recognising the early warning signs and working with an experienced provider can lessen the chances of needing complex orthodontic work in the future.

What is Dentofacial Orthopaedics?

Dentofacial orthopaedics are different from traditional orthodontics. Typically, we recommend this type of early intervention on qualified children under the age of 12 whose facial structures are still developing.

By incorporating the use of special types of appliances, we can stimulate the growth centre within the palate (roof of the mouth) and jaws to generate new bone and expand. The extra spacing allows for proper tooth eruption – as opposed to crowding – and bite alignment.

Depending on your child’s age and physical characteristics, early intervention can consist of anything from soft tissue therapy (like tongue tie treatments) to early orthodontics or other appliances.


Since early intervention orthodontics position your child’s bite in a way that allows for healthier permanent tooth placement, they can typically avoid the need for complex braces during their teen years! And if appliances are required later on, the treatment is usually kept to a minimum (and more affordable as a result). Teens can even opt to fine-tune their smile with our in-house Invisalign® orthodontics system.

Many orthodontic issues are linked with breathing problems and tongue habits. For instance, a newborn with a tongue tie may not be able to latch correctly for breastfeeding, causing feeding issues and changes in the way their jaw is shaped. In turn, they may develop early tongue habits such as a thrust, which presses against their front teeth abnormally.

Breathing obstructions are also linked to tongue position, jaw growth and facial imbalances. In many cases, children are referred to an ENT because of tonsil enlargement or nasal deviation, which interfere with their breathing quality. However, dentofacial orthopaedics can also work to address bone issues that are tied to airway obstruction.

Traditional orthodontic techniques use appliances to exert mechanical forces onto teeth without addressing the function of the overall mouth. Orthopaedics on the other hand, addresses why the form affects the function.

Functional orthopaedics is most effective when it’s implemented at a young age. The majority of orthodontic experts recommend having your child evaluated by age 7. At this point in your child’s development we can easily screen for atypical tooth eruption patterns and jaw growth.

That being said, early therapies that affect your child’s tongue movements and swallowing patterns can be helpful quite early. From breastfeeding issues in newborns to speech delays in toddlers, always be sure to speak with our dentist about concerns you may have.

Request a Consultation

For Early Intervention Orthodontics Port Hedland, request a consultation today. Contact Port Hedland Dental Surgery now to learn more about dentofacial orthopaedics for children.
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Any invasive or surgical procedure may carry risks. Before moving forward, it is recommended that you seek a second opinion from an appropriately licensed medical professional.


Early Intervention Orthodontics Port Hedland, South Hedland, Wedgefield, Pilbara WA | (08) 9173-5838