Testing & Diagnosis for Malocclusion in Children

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How is malocclusion diagnosed?

Malocclusion is usually diagnosed based on a complete history and physical examination of your child and your child's mouth.

Your child's physician will probably refer the child to a dentist or an orthodontist for complete evaluation and treatment. The following tests may also be done to help evaluate the problem:

  • X-rays -- a diagnostic test that uses invisible electromagnetic energy beams to produce images of your child's mouth and teeth on film.
  • Impressions of the teeth -- plaster models of the mouth to help evaluate the malocclusion.

Further diagnosis

Your child's orthodontist will decide whether your child's bite will benefit from orthodontic treatment and recommend the appropriate steps to follow. It is important to evaluate and treat many malocclusions as they may cause problems with your child's bite, gum tissue, jaw joint, speech development and appearance.

In some cases, a specialist in jaw surgery may need to be consulted.

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