Orthodontic Care: Does Your Child Need Braces?
Did you have braces as a child? If so you probably remember worrying about getting food stuck around them or the discomfort every time they were tightened up. However once they came off you were probably pleased and amazed at the results and realized braces are worth all the effort. Or perhaps you are one of the lucky ones that didn’t need braces, and you don’t understand what the big deal is about orthodontic care.
We Treat Our Patients as Individuals
Every child is different and this is one of the reasons why we treat all our patients as individuals and try to make the whole process of wearing braces as easy and as comfortable as possible. One of the most commonly asked questions we hear, is at what age should a child begin wearing braces? This can vary as can the timeframe needed to correct the positions of their teeth.
The Importance of Early Orthodontic Care
Although some children will need to wait until all their permanent teeth are in place before they can begin treatment, others may benefit from orthodontic therapy at a much younger age. This can help prevent the need for so much treatment at a later date, or even the need for surgery. It’s all about making sure your child gets the right kind of treatment at the right time as often it is timed to take advantage of growth spurts. There are lots of benefits to having early interceptive orthodontic care, and this is one of the reasons why we recommend you bring your child in to visit our orthodontist by age 7.
Scheduling Your Orthodontic Care Visits
It’s quite possible they may not need any treatment at this stage, but we will be able to fully assess their teeth and jaws and can see how they will develop in the future. If necessary, it will allow them plenty of time to get used to the idea of wearing braces, and we can work out an appointment schedule to ensure they get their orthodontic care at the correct time. After the first initial visit we are likely to want to see them again around 12 to 18 months later as this will enable us to monitor any changes and to provide treatment if any problems have arisen. Most children will get their braces around age 12.
If your child does need to be fitted with braces or needs a retainer then we will probably want to see them every 6 to 8 weeks to make any necessary adjustments to the device. It’s important to make sure they attend these appointments as otherwise it can prolong treatment time and may negatively impact the final results.
Oral Hygiene While Wearing Braces
Oral hygiene can be more of a problem while wearing braces, but we will provide lots of information on how to clean teeth during orthodontic care. Luckily there are lots of different devices that are designed to clean in between the brackets and wires and which will help minimize the risk of cavities. It’s important your child understands the need for good oral hygiene at this time as otherwise they could end up with cavities and permanent stains on their teeth once the braces are removed. With proper care however they should end up with a beautifully white, straight and healthy smile that will benefit them for life.