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FAQ:  Orthodontics - Children - Teens

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Orthodontics Ask The Orthodontist Ara Nazarian Question:
5mm Overjet....Need braces? My daughter (age 13) has a beautiful set of straight teeth and a 5 mm overjet.

The orthodontist said she needs braces because otherwise in the future, she will have problems and need caps and/or crowns.

We are concerned because it seems that orthos recommend braces for every kid they see. Can you give us an idea if braces are really necessary? ...Visitor from NE

Having a misaligned bite can cause some severe problems in the future for your daughter.

Although her teeth may be straight, a 5mm overjet at this early age can create increased wear on the posterior teeth since the front ones are not touching.

In other words you have some posterior teeth taking the force of all the teeth. You would gradually see as your daughter gets older more and more wear to where she would need crowns or possibily fractured posterior teeth.

I would definitely recommend ortho especially at this early age to prevent problems in the future. Also to correct this in the future could involve surgery. When kids are young, the bone and teeth can be manipulated without future problems.

A Nazarian, DDS

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