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Interviews with Experts

Orthodontist Dr. José A. Nakpil Lucas

"When patients have problems with jaw growth and emerging teeth, then a first phase of treatment is indicated. This is during the mixed dentition stage at around 7-11 years of age. This is important because if left unchecked some of these problems may lead to more serious problems that would require surgery to correct in the future but easily treated when intercepted at the early stages in young children" (JL, April 2014)

  • Children & Orthodontic Treatment

    At what age do you recommend that children have a checkup to see how their teeth are coming in?
    The recommended age for an orthodontic check-up is at 7 years of age as advised by the American Association of Orthodontist and the Sociedad Española de Orthodoncia.

    When would you recommend orthodontic treatment and why is it important?
    When patients have problems with jaw growth and emerging teeth, then a first phase of treatment is indicated. This is during the mixed dentition stage at around 7-11 years of age. This is important because if left unchecked some of these problems may lead to more serious problems that would require surgery to correct in the future but easily treated when intercepted at the early stages in young children.

    What is the best time in a childs life for treatment? Should children wait until all their teeth are through before being treated?
    Depending on each individual´s bite, sometimes children should wait until all permanent teeth are present before beginning treatment with braces.

    What is the best time in a childs life for treatment? Should children wait until all their teeth are through before being treated?
    Treatment time varies greatly from patient to patient. Some as short as 5 months, while more complicated ones may be as much as 24 to 28 months. The price range is just as varied. The great majority of orthodontists do not accept medical insurance.

    How do children cope with the pain associated with having a brace?
    Children are very adaptable, even more so than adults. I would use the term “initial discomfort” rather than “pain”. Orthodontic treatment is not and should not be painful.

    What are the long term benefits of early orthodontic treatment?
    Some of the long term benefits of orthodontic treatment are improved periodontal health, better function of the tooth and the TMJ, improves oral health and better aesthetics for a nice smile and facial appearance which leads to improved self confidence and self esteem.

    Will a brace mark childrens teeth?
    The brace in itself does not mark children´s teeth, it is however, of up most importance to maintain good oral hygiene during orthodontic treatment to prevent food particles from accumulating around the brace which can lead to the start of tooth decalcification.

    Are there risks to having fixed braces?
    Some of the risks to having fixed braces are gingival and periodontal disease as well as tooth decalcification in cases of neglected oral hygiene. Cleaning teeth with braces attached takes more work, so form the start we need that the patient puts their part in maintaining good oral hygiene. Less frequents risks are blunting of the roots or allergic reaction to orthodontic materials.

    If they have a brace too young will their teeth move after they have finished orthodontic treatment?
    Teeth move in the course of a lifetime specially lower incisors. In order to keep them from moving after orthodontic treatment, a set of retainers are to be worn generally at night.

    Do you recommend after brace work that children wear a sports mouth guard?
    If they participate in contact sports, yes, it is highly recommended.

    Where are you based and how long have you been in practice?
    I am based in Marbella and have been practicing exclusively in orthodontics for 18 years.

    For someone concerned about their childrens teeth how do they best contact you?
    The best way to contact us is by telephone (952 77 77 47) or sending us an e-mail to:recepcion@ortodoncianb.com

    April 2014