Have you noticed your child has been suffering from recurring ear infections? This health concern may be linked to an orthodontic issue. Our orthodontists at myORTHODONTIST explain how, and what can be done to help address this symptom.
What are Recurring Ear Infections?
Recurring ear infections are a common health concern for many children. When an ear infection lasts a long time or comes and goes, it's considered chronic and can lead to permanent damage to the ear and hearing loss. This can significantly impact speech development and quality of life.
A chronic ear infection may cause milder symptoms than an acute ear infection. Symptoms might affect one or both ears and may be constant or intermittent. Signs include:
- Trouble sleeping
- Fluid draining from ears
- Low fever
- Hearing problems
- Dizziness and loss of balance
- Nausea and vomiting
- A feeling of mild ear pain or pressure in the ear
What parents may not beware is that recurring ear infections may be related to an orthodontic issue such as a poorly positioned jaw or breathing airways, and can be addressed with early intervention and a custom orthodontic treatment plan.
How Can Orthodontics Help?
While every child's case is unique, we often see children with recurring ear infections who have been referred by a pediatrician or other health professional. We recommend parents book a first orthodontic assessment by the time their child reaches 7 years old. This is because young children's jaws are still developing and malleable, making it an ideal time to examine them and determine the best course of treatment.
By using early intervention as part of a 2-phase orthodontic treatment approach, we can design a custom treatment plan to address issues with the jaw and perhaps widen or realign it.