The twin block appliance is commonly used on younger children and teenagers whose jawbone is still developing. Orthodontists use this device to correct severe malocclusions (misalignment) in the upper and lower jaw. An overjet is a misalignment in the jaw that causes the upper teeth to stick out in front of the lower teeth much further than normal. Twin blocks assist in shifting the lower jaw forward. This functional appliance has two acrylic blocks that sit on the top molars and bottom bicuspids. When the mouth is closed, the two parts combine to position the lower jaw forward. Once the perfect alignment has been achieved, your child's orthodontist may recommend teeth-straightening treatment.
Pros: Twin blocks are less likely to affect your child's speech. The treatment is fairly short and may last for about 9-12 months. Because twin blocks are a removable device, your child can take them out after eating to rinse them off.
Cons: This orthodontic appliance needs to be fitted while your child's jawbone is still growing, so early screening is vital. It is normal for your child to experience excessive salivation as their mouth gets used to the device. This should go away within a few weeks.
Orthodontia is an important part of your child's dental care. With early visits, orthodontists can determine and treat misalignment issues that can affect the appearance of your child's teeth and their ability to speak and eat properly. Feel free to ask them about these appliances and how they can ensure that your child has a healthy and beautiful smile!