Comprehensive Treatment for Your Best Smile

A common misconception of orthodontic treatment is that it treats a problem that is primarily aesthetic. Without question, the confidence that comes from straight teeth and a beautiful smile can benefit you throughout your life. However, orthodontics is about more than looks.

As an orthodontist experienced in specialty and airway-centric orthodontics in Austin, TX, Dr. Seth Briggs strives to provide orthodontic treatment that does more than straighten teeth—he seeks to provide your child with a lifetime of healthy breathing.

Why Is the Way You Breathe Important?

You already know breathing is essential, of course. It’s a fundamental function of life!

What many people around Austin don’t recognize, however, is the broad spectrum between the states of “breathing” and “not breathing.” It is possible to breathe in a way that optimally benefits your overall health.

On the other hand, it is also possible to breathe in a way that forces your body to compensate for limited oxygen levels.

If your child regularly struggles to achieve proper oxygen levels, especially while sleeping, numerous long-lasting health and development problems can result.

Austin Orthodontist

When to See an Orthodontist for Airway Health

If you or your child demonstrates any of the following symptoms, then we recommend an evaluation with Dr. Briggs:

Symptoms in Toddlers & Children

  • Hyperactivity
  • ADHD
  • Chronic lethargy
  • Breathing through the mouth instead of the nose
  • Rapid shallow breathing
  • Bedwetting
  • Chronic nighttime restlessness, waking, or nightmares
  • Periods of no breathing or breath-holding while asleep

Symptoms in Adolescents & Adults

  • Chronic daytime sleepiness despite a full night’s sleep
  • Feeling unrested upon waking in the morning
  • Dozing off easily during activities in the daytime
  • Poor school or work performance
  • Periods of no breathing or breath-holding while asleep
  • Obesity

What Is Airway-Centric Orthodontics?

Airway-Centric orthodontics seeks to address the underlying causes of obstructed breathing, so you or your child can enjoy a lifetime of optimum breathing and improved overall health.

During your initial exam and diagnosis with Dr. Briggs, he will seek to answer the following questions:

  • Have the improper formation of the maxilla, mandible, or other components of the jaw and airway resulted in limited airflow during breathing?
  • Are there other reasons for restricted airflow that are better addressed by another medical specialist (Ear, Nose, Throat (ENT) physician, myofunctional therapist, etc.)
  • Has the patient had to compensate for limited airflow while breathing? Has this resulted in improper habits, abnormal facial growth patterns, poor tongue placement, or body posture?
  • Have these compensations and/or genetic factors influenced the shape, size, or position of the jaw and face?

If Dr. Briggs identifies any issues that could be helped with orthodontic treatment, he will discuss his recommendations with you during your initial consultation.

Airway-centric orthodontic treatment is most effective in young children while their facial structures are fully developed, but adults can also be helped in some limited cases.