If you’re a mom, you already know how much is involved in keeping your family’s schedule functioning smoothly. At any given moment, you may step into the role of cook, chauffeur, banker, personal assistant, or even party planner! Here at Buttram Orthodontics, we salute your skills, but when it comes to caring for your child’s smile? You can sit this one out! Even though you can balance work, school, and extracurricular activities like a pro, there are many things moms need to know about orthodontics. Your child’s oral health requires the expertise and professional guidance of an orthodontist like Dr. Buttram.
Did you know that it takes several years of extra education and training after dental school to become an orthodontist? Dr. Buttram is a highly-trained specialist in tooth movement, facial growth, and dental development, with years of experience creating beautiful smiles for patients of all ages! You may not be an expert on orthodontics, but Dr. Buttram is. That’s why you can count on him and the rest of our talented team to give your child a straighter, healthier smile.
Choosing orthodontic treatment is a big investment in your child’s oral health, and the future of their smile. We value the trust you and your family place in our practice, and we want you and your child to feel fully confident in the journey ahead. Let’s take a closer look at the top 5 things moms need to know about orthodontics before embarking on this adventure with your child!
Children should have an initial orthodontic evaluation by age 7
Although orthodontics is often associated with teens, patients of all ages can benefit from improved oral health, including children. This is one reason the American Association of Orthodontists recommends every child has their first orthodontic exam by about the age of 7. This recommendation can be confusing to some parents since children that young have developing mouths with lots of baby teeth left. But as it turns out, that’s exactly the point! Observing a child’s mouth at this age allows an experienced orthodontist like Dr. Buttram to spot any potential problems early on. In turn, this can help reduce (or even eliminate) any negative impact on your child’s permanent teeth and bite.
At Buttram Orthodontics, we treat a number of younger patients, which has allowed us to see firsthand the difference preventive care can make. Starting treatment at the right time can have a big impact on a child’s oral health, both now and in the future as their permanent teeth begin to grow. Most children won’t require active treatment at first, but an early exam lets us determine if orthodontic treatment is likely to be needed later in life, and when the most advantageous time to begin it would be.
Orthodontic treatment goes beyond a straight smile
Many people mistakenly believe that orthodontics is only about straightening smiles, but there’s so much more to it than that! Orthodontic treatment can address and correct a variety of issues, from simple to complex. Issues like crooked teeth, misaligned jaws, and overbites go beyond cosmetic concerns, and can actually affect a patient’s overall oral health as well. Working with an experienced orthodontist like Dr. Buttram leads to a straighter smile and a mouth that is fully functional, as well!
Straight teeth aren’t the only indicator of a healthy smile, so orthodontists must learn how to diagnose, prevent, and correct malpositioned teeth and jaws. By examining a patient’s teeth, the movement and growth of their jaw, and the way the teeth are developing, Dr. Buttram is able to catch any impacted, missing, or overcrowded teeth that may otherwise go unnoticed. This lets us correct problems before they can become more serious.
Choose an orthodontic practice your family feels comfortable with
Orthodontic treatment requires regular check-ups throughout the process. Depending on the type of appliance and the treatment plan, most patients will be seen about every 6-10 weeks or so. You’ll both be spending quite a bit of time in the orthodontist’s office, so it’s important to find a practice you and your child feel comfortable with!
Our Panama City office is conveniently located, and provides patients of any age with a comfortable, modern space to relax in. Because we use the latest technology and most innovative treatments available, we’re able to offer the best in customized orthodontic care. You can always count on our talented team to go the extra mile in making sure our patients achieve the beautiful smile they’ve always wanted in an environment that is both positive and supportive.
Multiple treatment options are available
Buttram Orthodontics combines cutting-edge techniques and state-of-the-art 3D technology with personalized treatment plans for the best, longest-lasting results. We are proud to offer the following treatments in our Panama City office.
Traditional metal braces
This is the most popular orthodontic treatment available, and it’s not hard to see why. They’re reliable, effective, and cost-efficient, not to mention smaller, lighter, and more comfortable than ever before! Metal braces are composed of high-quality stainless steel brackets, wires, and bands that work together to gently guide the teeth into the desired positions. They can even be personalized by choosing elastics from a wide variety of fun colors.
Also known as ceramic, tooth-colored, or esthetic braces, these function in the same way metal braces do. However, patients can choose semi-translucent ceramic brackets for very white teeth, or tooth-colored ceramic for slightly darker teeth, making them a more customizable and discreet option. Either option tends to blend in well with your natural smile! When paired with clear, white, or tooth-colored wires and elastic ties, they are a subtle way to straighten your smile, and are especially popular with our adult patients.
Clear braces are durable, but they are made from a material that can chip or crack. For younger patients, or those who have more complex corrections to be made, metal braces may be the better option.
Invisalign clear aligner therapy
Invisalign uses a series of clear, customized aligners to move the teeth over time. Because these aligners are nearly invisible and completely removable, they give patients an extra freedom and flexibility not available with braces. As the teeth begin to shift, the aligners will be changed out every 1-2 weeks to keep up with their movement.
The Invisalign system relies on patient compliance to work properly. Aligners must be worn a minimum of 20-22 hours every day, throughout the course of treatment, in order to achieve the desired results. Invisalign tends to work best for patients with mild to moderate orthodontic issues, so it may not always be suitable for cases that are more severe or complicated.
Treatment times will vary from case to case
Unfortunately, there’s no “one size fits all” answer to how long a patient will need to be in braces or aligners. Every case is different, and each patient will respond to treatment in their own way. The length of time that your child will require treatment will depend on several factors, including their specific case, the severity of the problem, their oral health, and how compliant they are. On average, however, braces tend to be worn for about 12-24 months, while Invisalign treatment usually lasts around 12-18 months.
Give your child the gift of a beautiful smile from Buttram Orthodontics
Moms want nothing but the best for their children, and that includes a beautiful, healthy smile that will last a lifetime! If you have a child around the age of 7, we’d love to schedule them for an initial visit with Dr. Buttram. Get in touch today for a FREE consultation, and take the first step towards your child’s best smile!