What is Orthotropics?
Dr. Boyd is one of the only leading Pediatric Dentists in Chicago involved with the latest alternatives to traditional orthodontics known as Orthotropics.
Orthotropics is the process of guiding the natural growth of the face from a young age to avoid mal-development. Corrective Orthotropics can prevent the need for more invasive procedures, such as jaw surgery, for patients later in life. Unlike traditional orthodontics, Orthotropics does not involve extracting or pulling teeth. Orthotropics was developed by Dr. John Mew of London, England in the 1950's to address the shortcomings of conventional orthodontic treatment which at the time was primarily concerned with the straightening of teeth rather than the proper positioning of the jaws. The ideal time to begin orthotropic treatment, is under the age of 10. The goal is to optimize facial development with the upper and lower jaws both being more ideally situated forward in the face. The second goal is to correct the poor oral rest posture, which produced the unfavorable growth in the first place. Downward and backward movement of the upper front teeth is the first obvious sign of unfavorable facial growth.
In addition to helping assure the development of straight teeth and a full attractive smile and face, a child who is treated in accordance with Orthotropic principles can also have the added potential for maximizing her/his ability to breath good quality (filtered, warmed and humidified ) nasal air, which can add overall benefits for a lifetime.
During childhood, it is important for parents to encourage their children's dental health. During the ages of 6 and 10 primary, or (baby) teeth are being replaced by permanent (adult) teeth. This is an important age to solidify proper dental habits. During this age, children should be taught to care for their teeth on their own with instruction from their dentist and encouragement from their parents.
When primary or "baby" teeth are not cared for properly, it can lead to tooth decay, gum disease, pain and infection. Research shows that there's a strong connection between oral and overall health for children and adults. Dental care is one of the most neglected forms of health care among children.