Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Brace yourself!

Like a true American youth, my son has been going through the process of getting braces. Who would've thought there was so much to it? First he had an extensive series of X-rays and teeth impressions. They also took regular photos of his face. We had a consultation with the orthodontist who described exactly where he was in his growth cycle, how he knew from his hand X-rays that he was about to enter puberty and how his current teeth were shaping his jawline and face.

Apparently he has a Class II Congenital skeletal deformity, which means that his lower jaw does not protrude forward enough and his teeth don't line up, potentially causing problems in the future, as well as giving him that "weak chin" appearance. So they will use a special device that fits on his back teeth and forces his jaw to grow more forwards. He is getting this fitted in a few weeks time. Apparently it sounds a lot more painful than it actually is. Hmmm...

The final step , which will occur in a few months time, is when the braces will be attached. He wants blue braces (actually the elastics not the braces themselves) and he will have to wear them for about 18 months. Apparently its easy to change the color of the elastics and he plans to have red and green ones at Christmas time :-)

So, according to the orthodontist, my son has an overbite, a class II congenital skeletal deformity causing jaw misalignment, which can lead to tongue protrusion and lip droop. And there was me thinking his front teeth just stuck out...

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