Growth and Development Issues

The majority of orthodontic patients begin treatment around the age of 11 or 12. However, treatment may be recommended at a younger age if there are growth and development issues present. Some problems will be quite noticeable, while others may be nearly undetectable. That is why it is important to bring your child in for an orthodontic screening at seven years of age. When detected early, these issues can be treated efficiently and effectively. At Roy Orthodontics, we offer a variety of treatments that can address these problems early on and prevent serious issues from developing in the future. Here, we will explore a few common growth and development issues, and how to treat them.

Chronic Mouth Breathing

Does your child breathe with his or her mouth open? This may be a common occurrence during a sinus infection or illness. However, chronic mouth breathing can signify a developmental issue. If the teeth, jaw joints, and other facial structures do not align properly, it can prevent your child from completely closing the mouth. This can result in chronic inflammation of the oral soft tissues. If left untreated, mouth breathing can cause a wide array of issues, including tooth crowding, abnormal facial growth, compromised airways, and many others.

Mouth breathing also results in compromised sleep quality. Because of this, many researchers believe it can hinder academic performance and negatively affect behavioral health.

Obstructed Airways

When your child has a cold, he or she may not be able to breathe properly. However, if breathing difficulties are chronic, it could indicate an obstruction of the airway. This could be the result of improper placement of the upper jaw, lower jaw, or both, causing the soft tissues of the throat to collapse over the airway, restricting oxygen flow to the brain.


It may not seem as though asthma can affect dental health. However, children who suffer from this respiratory condition are at a higher risk for developing abnormalities in the oral and maxillofacial structures. During the formative years, the bones of the face are still soft and malleable. Therefore, if problems arise, they are easier to correct while the child is still young. Waiting until they are older may lead to more complex issues later on.

A Narrowed or Restricted Palate

If your child’s palate is narrow or constricted, it can lead to severe malocclusion, such as a cross bite. This condition is much easier to address while the patient is young, and still in the developmental years. Gently expanding the palate will encourage proper jaw growth, optimal sinus placement, and facial harmony.

An Underdeveloped Lower Jaw

Oftentimes, the appearance of a small chin or an overbite is actually caused by an underdeveloped jaw. If the lower jaw is retruded, it can increase the risk of TMJ disorder as your child grows older. Addressing this problem early will encourage proper jaw growth for optimal oral health.

Treating Growth and Development Issues

While all of these growth and development issues can lead to more severe problems in the future, they are also much easier to correct while your child is still young. By undergoing early orthodontics, your child can avoid more invasive and costly procedures when they are older. Children’s orthodontics is the most conservative path to a lifetime of oral health.

Schedule a Consultation with Dr. Roy

The best way to know if your child will require early orthodontic treatment is to schedule a visit at our Virginia Beach or Chesapeake office location. Dr. Carl Roy can assess your child’s oral health and let you know an appropriate age to begin treatment. To learn more, contact us online anytime, or give us a call.

Dr. Carl Roy Meet Dr Roy
My sincere thanks to Dr. Roy and his team for showing me the way! My baby teeth had to be crowned for years since 2 of my adult teeth never came in. This was just one piece of the puzzle that needed figuring out. I’m proud of my smile and it shows every time I meet someone!Liz

Roy Orthodontics Locations

Virginia Beach Location

4388 Holland Rd
Ste. 200
Virginia Beach, VA 23452
(757) 471-2900  

Chesapeake Location

684 Battlefield Blvd. N
Ste. B
Chesapeake, VA 23320
(757) 549-1115

Google Reviews

Kathy Knopp
Kathy Knopp
00:56 10 May 18
Great orthodontist with great results. I know I can be frustrating to deal with but Dr Roy hung in there. Thank you Dr Roy
Sherrilyn Olds-Cage
Sherrilyn Olds-Cage
11:13 09 May 18
My teenage daughter and I are in treatment. We love the care and the progress we are receiving from Dr. Roy. Everyone there is kind and knowledgeable. They are going far beyond the expected to give us top-knotch service.
gabrielle hopkins
gabrielle hopkins
16:25 08 May 18
Dr. Roy and his team has been nothing short of a blessing to me. I was stationed in Virginia four years ago, I came to Dr. Roy with braces from another Orthodontist, instead of pushing me away like most doctors due to not wanting to finish another's work he was more than welcoming. Due to after care with retainers I wasnt as diligent as I should to wear them often Dr. Roy and staff always made me feel wanted and warm to start the process over. Many days I didn't want to smile, his team always brought cheer. I was actually refereed to him by someone else and I shared the candor and referred someone also. I said to myself " does anyone here have a bad day, everyone is literally always smiling". It saddens me a bit to have my braces off because I wont see their smiling faces monthly. But, if you want fair over the top treatment, Dr. Roy and staff will ensure 5 star treatment. They are truly a blessing, I wish I could give more than 5 stars.
Colman Elis
Colman Elis
13:59 02 May 18
They were always super friendly and they always knew who you were when you walked in. Everytime I was there they were fast and I'm very happy with the outcome of my teeth.
Jorene Delacruz
Jorene Delacruz
15:07 27 Mar 18
Dr. Roy & his staff are more than wonderful. I would recommend this practice 10x if I could. They are amazing at what they do, especially Dr. Roy for understanding my past situation with my teeth. I’m so grateful & happy to have been a patient here for many years. The staff knows what they’re doing and is always so nice. I can’t thank you guys enough for dealing with my crazy teeth!
Tanya Barclift
Tanya Barclift
02:49 28 Feb 18
My son was need of palate expanders and braces and Dr. Roy and his staff have been such a blessing to us! He was only 8 years of age when this was all needed and they treated him with such professionalism and ease! Dr. Roy has such a love and compassion for his patients and families! What could have been a nightmare for my son was actually the exact opposite because of his expertise in this field. Karen, Sandy and the whole office staff is amazing!!! I would highly recommend this practice who is need of their services! Thank you Dr. Roy and staff for helping our son! May God continue to bless your wonderful practice and employees!!
04:50 24 Feb 18
Everyone was so welcoming and polite. They made me very comfortable which made me want to keep coming back. I love how they put their patients first, and they do everything they can to make sure their patients’ teeth are perfect👌🏾.
Jay Wang
Jay Wang
22:04 01 Feb 18
Dr. Roy and his team took great care of my son’s teeth. They are efficient, professional and knowledgeable. Everyone has been friendly and helpful. They fixed my niece’s braces for free during her visit!
Samantha Simmons-Conaway
Samantha Simmons-Conaway
16:09 09 Jan 18
Wonderful staff. Everything was always explained thoroughly and I felt comfortableAs an older adult I had lots of trepidation about doing braces but they made process clear and I always looked forward to my visitsHighly recommend this practice. Special kudos to Tracy who is a wonderful tech and a great person
Heather Ham
Heather Ham
16:41 15 Dec 17
Dr Roy and his staff have provided Orthodontic care for both of my children. The best thing I can say about Dr Roy is he always puts the needs of the child and their long term orthodontic care first. It isn’t just about putting braces on your kids to have straight teeth for pictures it is about treating them at the appropriate age so that the care they receive is appropriate and will last them into adulthood and more importantly won’t have to be repeated when they finish growing. As a parent it was so refreshing to deal with a practice as practical and professional as Roy Orthodontics. I recommend them to anyone seeking orthodontics for their children.
Sheila Field
Sheila Field
17:12 04 Dec 17
I am thrilled with my results from Roy Orthodontics. I am happy to say that my jaw is pain free for the first time in years. My joint popped, cracked and hurt after I had braces as a teenager. Now, I not only look good but I feel good too. Thank you Dr. Roy and your amazing staff for investing your time in being the best. This team of experts will certainly give you a reason to smile!
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