Growth Modification Treatment

As part of the growth modification process, growth modification appliances are used to correct the shape, position or width of the jaw bone(s). Some common devices are:

  • Headgear, an appliance that uses pressure to guide teeth and jaw growth.
  • Herbst, an appliance attached to the upper and lower molars that corrects overbite caused by a small lower jaw.
  • Bionator, a removable appliance that guides teeth and jaw growth.
  • Palatal expander, an appliance that corrects cross bite by widening the upper jaw.

Because growth modification is at the center of orthodontic treatment, the younger the patient, the better the treatment outcome. Early mixed dentition, which is marked by the emergence of the secondary teeth at the ages of 6 to 7, is considered the optimum age for most types of malocclusion.

Who benefits from early treatment?

  • Children 7 to 9 years old with severe crowding
  • Narrowed upper jaw with or without crossbite
  • Those with habits such as thumb sucking, forward tongue posture (tongue thrust), or mouth breathing
  • Cases with large overjet (overbite)
  • Cases involving overgrowth of the lower jaw or underdevelopment of the upper jaw

For more information on growth modification and interceptive orthodontics, contact Beautiful Smiles Dental Care at 904-733-3360 today.