Craniofacial Orthodontics is the branch of orthodontic treatment that focuses on patients with birth defects such as cleft lip or cleft palate. Affecting the craniofacial region (face, mouth, and jaws) these malformations can have a serious impact on a child’s daily life, and oral health. At Hoybjerg Orthodontics, a team of specialists, including speech pathologists, oral surgeons, and plastic surgeons, will work closely with the child’s family to plan the desired outcome of treatment.

Clefting occurs when there is not enough tissue in the mouth or lip area during prenatal development, and these facial features do not form correctly or completely. The parts of the face that form the upper lip and mouth remain split instead of sealing together before birth. The cause is unknown but may be due to genetics or environmental factors.

  • Patients experience greater confidence when facial features are carefully reconstructed through surgery so that the initial deformity is almost completely undetectable.
  • A cleft lip or palate can make it very difficult to eat and drink, as food and liquid can pass easily from the mouth into the nose, causing discomfort and posing a serious choking hazard.
  • Cleft lip and palate can lead to a buildup of fluid in the middle ear, creating a higher risk of ear infections which, if not properly treated, could lead to deafness.

Surgery for craniofacial deformities typically occurs when the child is around 3-6 months old. Depending on the severity and extent of the cleft, multiple surgeries may be needed to achieve the desired results. The craniofacial orthodontist and team of specialists will carefully consider all aspects of the surgery to minimize invasiveness and recovery time while ensuring results last and will not require future surgeries.

Hoybjerg Family Orthodontics is committed to providing the best oral healthcare to patients of all ages, no matter their needs. Our state-of-the-art orthodontic technology can treat it all from the simplest to the most complex concerns, and our team of highly skilled specialists will work with you to achieve the results you’ve been dreaming of.