Years of Professional Dental Treatment
Elevated Patient Care Since 1997.
At Classic Smiles, we strive to make dental care easy and stress-free. With more than twenty years of experience serving Iowa City residents, we know how important it is to provide professional yet caring dental treatment.
Some of the services we provide include:
- Cosmetic Dentistry
For more in-depth services, such as wisdom teeth extraction and root canal treatment, we work directly with specialty offices.
Classic Smiles is conveniently located at 611 E Burlington Street, just a short walk from downtown Iowa City. Drop by whenever you're in the area, make an appointment online, or contact us by calling 319.727.8007.Learn More
Visiting Iowa City Orthodontics for the First Time
The best Iowa City orthodontics professionals help to keep your child’s jaw and teeth in solid shape. However, odds are you didn’t know much about these treatments yourself as a child. As a result, you’re likely a little concerned about taking your child to the orthodontist for the first time.
As a result, you may need to seriously consider these orthodontic services to ensure that your child is adequately protected. Most of the time, treatment processes follow the steps below and are done with an orthodontics professional who fully understands the unique challenges of these problems.
Why Preventative Treatment is So Important
Most Iowa City orthodontics focus on preventing, not treating, common orthodontic problems. That’s because prevention is still the best way to keep a person safe from serious issues. Most of the time, prevention takes on a handful of different approaches that orthodontic services can provide with ease.
Most preventative steps can be handled by a standard dentist, though a few may require the help of orthodontic professionals. Most of the time, they require minimal surgery and are almost always outpatient procedures. Just a few different steps that orthodontists may take to prevent problems include:
- Removing a primary (“baby”) tooth to make it easier for the permanent tooth to arrive
- Inserting space maintainers to avoid encroaching teeth if a primary tooth falls out too soon
- Performing x-rays and scans of the jaw to see how well the new teeth are coming into the mouth
- Inserting retainers or other corrective tools before braces are necessary for a child
All of these processes can be handled by professional orthodontists with ease. They take the time to fully understand each step they take and won’t do anything that would harm your mouth. The idea is to ensure that your mouth is protected and that no long-term issues develop.
In this way, preventative care helps minimize your need for Iowa City orthodontics by preventing the problems they usually treat. Orthodontic services of this type typically start early in a child’s life, long before all their primary teeth have fallen out, and may be all the care your child needs.
What Interceptive Care Does for Your Child
Although the best preventative Iowa City orthodontics should help with most minor problems, some children have more persistent issues. For example, their teeth may grow misaligned in their mouth or struggle to properly emerge if gum tissue grows over the top of the primary tooth in any way.
In this situation, parents need to consider interceptive orthodontic services. This treatment is considered Phase I of your child’s care and is done if preventative care did not work. The idea is to spot a minor problem and treat it before becoming a more severe issue. These steps include:
- Installing a palate expander device to increase the size of the child’s jaw
- Using a more restrictive retainer to correct a child’s teeth at an early age
- Removing gum tissue that may have grown over the top of a permanent tooth before an eruption
Steps like these are critical because they firmly direct a child’s jaw into proper alignment. These steps don’t typically require surgery beyond a bit of gum removal but may be a little more complex than preventative steps. Some children may need sedation during more extreme measures.
Thankfully, the need for sedation is quite rare because these steps are still relatively minor. It isn’t until more intensive orthodontics that surgery and recovery time are considered. Hopefully, this type of interceptive care helps your child and minimizes the need for more detailed consideration.
When Comprehensive Processes are Needed
Comprehensive Iowa City orthodontics comes into play when interceptive care fails. This stage is probably what most people imagine when they think of orthodontic services. The purpose of this step is to restore your child’s occlusion (bite) through a variety of simple but effective services.
When a child’s oral health reaches this stage, they need to prepare themselves for more extensive treatment. Nothing here will require actual surgery or any cutting. However, a child may find some of these processes a little uncomfortable. Orthodontic professionals help with this step by:
- Installing braces on the teeth that help to slowly but surely, correct a child’s occlusion
- Using retainers after removing the braces to keep this new shape permanent
- Fitting a child with Invisalign braces that can be worn and removed like a mouthguard
Anticipate starting this type of care with your child when they are around 7-12 years old. In extreme cases, comprehensive care may be necessary for younger children. That situation is quite rare, though, because most orthodontic interventions require the child to lose all primary teeth.
How Surgery Helps Your Child’s Health
In just about every case, this type of Iowa City orthodontics should help restore your child’s smile. That said, there are situations in which surgery may be necessary. Usually, this need occurs if a child’s orthodontic problems are more intense than anticipated and require more specialized care.
Surgery can correct a handful of different issues, such as correcting an overbite or underbite. Often, this requires temporarily and surgically breaking the jaw and resetting it, a process that will require an inpatient stay and several follow-up care options.
Thankfully, this type of surgery is not that common and is usually only done if tooth extractions don’t help. This process carefully removes crowded teeth to provide more room for your child’s jaw to grow. The best Iowa City orthodontics will take this step long before doing any jaw adjustment processes.
Don’t Ignore the Benefits of Orthodontic Services
As you can see, the best Iowa City orthodontics provides a comprehensive level of care for your child’s oral health. By walking your child through these steps, from least restrictive and up, you can help them manage problematic oral health issues and keep their teeth as straight as possible.
When you call us at Classic Smiles near Iowa City, you can schedule any of these different orthodontics care methods to provide your child with the help they need. In this way, it is possible to ensure that they don’t suffer any physical or emotional pain due to crooked teeth or poor jaw alignment.