Children’s Epigenetic Orthodontics

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Developmental Orthodontics and Children

Children have growth centers in the face and jaws that are active and available for stimulation. The orthodontic effect of harnessing growth can produce the most beneficial results. This is why Dr. Pavlenko would prefer to evaluate children around the ages of five to six-year-old. If unwanted or deficient growth tendencies are discovered, growth guidance orthodontics can be used to correct the trajectory of growth. This will then have dramatic benefits on the face and airways. If any treatment is deferred until all the adult teeth have erupted, then facial growth potential is greatly reduced. Remodeling of the jaws however, is something that can be done at any age, but for the most ideal result harnessing growth and remodeling before puberty is best.

The Removable Anterior Growth Guidance Appliance is used to help develop the Naso-facial area and upright the lower jaw ramus through remodeling. It as well helps to develop the upper jaw three dimensionally, creates a positive effect on the airway and much more. The appliance itself is made of acrylic and metal clasps which fits comfortably in the roof of the mouth. There are small screws built into the appliance that would be turned over a period of time to activate the appliance.

Child Case 1

You can see in just 8 months with the growth guidance how this young girl’s entire face has developed forward. Before treatment started, you can see how the lower jaw is smaller and more positioned back which can also result in restrictions to the airways. The right view shows how the face is now developed forward and more proportioned and is back on a preferred pattern of growth. You can also see how it has improved the dimension of the airways following treatment. This is why Dr. Pavlenko believes early intervention is important and that growth appliances are truly important in assisting with children’s growth patterns at a younger age. Waiting until all the permanent teeth erupt will miss most of the facial growth potential and could pose potential health risks.

Child Case 2

Here is another example of how just after 8 months of treatment with the growth guidance how this young boy’s upper jaw had managed to develop into a better relationship with the lower jaw. Before treatment you can see the upper teeth sit behind his lower, it should be the other way with the lower teeth being behind the upper teeth. Early intervention was able to encourage growth of the upper jaw and create a better skeletal relationship. This would also prevent the need for more complex remodeling of the maxilla at an adult age.

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