Pediatric Orthodontist and Braces Treatment


Braces are a big milestone for kids. Some look forward to it. Some dread it. But all can enjoy and benefit from seeing an orthodontist.

What is orthodontics?

Screening for braces

Pediatric dentists, like ours, are trained to identify orthodontic issues early. Dr. Laura and Dr. Susie include orthodontic screenings during every routine oral health check up. This helps patients know when it is the best time to start orthodontic care.

Screenings look at the growth and development of each child. Dr. Laura and Dr. Susie will evaluate

  • Your child’s overall mouth
  • Tooth position and alignment
  • Jaw alignment and overall “bite”
  • Unerupted, missing, and impacted teeth
  • Crowding or spacing
  • “Over and underbites” and crossbites

Our dental office can help get the process started by booking an appointment. Every cleaning can be an opportunity to talk to our team about braces and other ongoing care. A pediatric dental practice brings a special level of care to children’s dentistry, including orthodontics.

In-house orthodontics treatment

The next step is having an orthodontic evaluation done with an orthodontist. Parents and kids don’t need to fear or worry about finding a new office to get the care they need. St. Johns Pediatric Dentistry has an orthodontist as part of the practice and offers complimentary initial orthodontic exams to provide the highest level of care.

Dr. W. Vaughn Holland, our in-house orthodontist and Jacksonville native, is trained in both prosthodontics and orthodontics. He specializes in the diagnosis, prevention, and treatment of dentofacial irregularities and can help align the teeth and jaws. Less than ten doctors in the United States have this dual specialty!

Having an orthodontist at the practice means that patients can receive all of their child’s dental care at the same dental home. Getting cleanings and orthodontic checkups done all under the same roof can be a sanity-saver for busy parents and kids.

The American Association of Orthodontists recommend a check-up with an orthodontists specialist no later than age 7.

Children braces consultation

After the initial exam, each patient will complete a diagnostic record. Staff will take photos of the patient’s face and teeth, impressions to study, bite registrations, and any x-rays needed.

Dr. Holland will look at each child’s smile, evaluating growth, bite, tooth, or other problems that orthodontics can help. Treatment options, including types of braces, braces cost, expected time to wear braces, and best time to begin, will be discussed during a consultation. The team can help each child get the best smile for them through an individualized treatment plan.

From traditional braces and rubber bands to how to wear a retainer, we can help you find the best orthodontic treatment plan for your child’s teeth.

Smiles change lives so we don’t believe braces should be considered a luxury. Every child deserves to feel good about their smile! When it comes to straightening teeth braces are still the primary means for straightening teeth and correcting misaligned bites if a child needs braces. There are all types of braces including metal braces.

Kid braces, teen braces, and adult braces

Just as each child is unique, so is each dazzling smile. The St. Johns Pediatric Dentistry team will monitor the arrival of permanent teeth, along with face and jaw development, to decide when best to start the braces process.

Early orthodontics treatment (7-10 years of age) is the least common, but can be needed to ensure healthy growth and development. Because baby teeth are most likely still present at this age, orthodontics are usually postponed until all of the child’s permanent teeth are in.  Early treatment is most often used when a child has dental issues related to growth that keep them from becoming more severe.

Orthodontics during adolescence is the most common time to start orthodontic treatment, as all of the permanent teeth have erupted. This is often the most effective period to treat orthodontic issues. An orthodontic exam and individualized consultation can determine what is best for your child.

Adult orthodontic treatment can be a great option for those looking to improve their smile and the overall health of their teeth and gums. Modern technology and available treatments provide a wide range of options for adults to get the smile they have always wanted.

Ongoing visits will address how braces are working and any adjustments that need to be made. Orthodontics come with some expected discomfort, but the team at St. Johns Pediatric Dentistry can help soothe both fears and discomfort to create sparkling smiles.

Orthodontic problems don’t have to stop your child from smiling and laughing through life. Parents can be confident that the care their get at St. Johns Pediatric Dentistry will be fun, beneficial, and lead to overall dental health. With the help of a trained orthodontist and an individualized treatment plan, every child can put their best sparkling smile forward.

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