When is the Ideal Time to Use a Herbst or Forsus Appliance to Treat Overbite?

My 10 year old son has been to a couple of orthodontist for consultations. He has many issues including a class II overbite and a narrow top palate. We have been given various treatment plans which I understand, but I am confused on the why there seems to be a difference in the best time to start treatment. My understanding is that early intervention is optimal, but am wondering if that is correct? The orthodontists we have seen to this point suggest waiting until after he is 12 to begin.

Doctor Answers 1

Early intervention is generally best for treating malocclusions.

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While every orthodontic case may have slightly different considerations, most of the current research and dental literature is pointing toward early intervention as most effective in treating a skeletal malocclusion such as the Class II overbite that you describe. Palatal expansion and guided eruption of permanent teeth offer many advantages to the young patient. Treatment that begins at a younger age can also minimize a secondary phase of treatment that is performed after final eruption of permanent teeth, rather that the previous approach of treatment only after eruption of all permanent teeth (generally over 12 years old). 

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.