Early Orthodontic Treatment With Braces
At our offices, you can count on a conservative, valuable approach to early treatment. We believe that being proactive in addressing your child’s orthodontic health is key to ensuring their smile is healthy and confident and will carry them on to great things and fun adventures as they grow!
When Should My Child First See An Orthodontist?
While there is no exact age for children to begin orthodontic treatment, the American Association of Orthodontists recommends visiting the orthodontist around age seven. By this age, most children have a mix of baby teeth and adult teeth, making it easier for the orthodontist to diagnose and correct tooth and jaw problems. Although treatment may not always be necessary at this age, early evaluation allows our team to monitor your child’s smile as they grow and catch any orthodontic issues before they become serious.
Here are a few things to look for that will help you determine if your child needs to see an orthodontist:
- Early or late loss of baby teeth
- A hard time chewing or biting food
- Mouth breathing
- Finger or thumb sucking
- Crowded, misplaced, or blocked teeth
- Teeth that come together abnormally or do not come together at all
- Jaws and teeth that are not proportionate to the rest of the face
- Crowded front teeth around age seven or eight
If you notice any of these signs, please contact our team to schedule a complimentary consultation for an orthodontic evaluation. Early treatment now will give your child a healthy, beautiful smile for the future. We want your child to live life smiling!
What To Expect When Your Child Starts Treatment
We all know the first visit for your child can feel new, and your child could feel nervous. We take great care to make you both feel at ease and comfortable while you get to know us! After a brief get-to-know-you, we’ll take photos and X-rays of your child’s mouth. We will also get a scan of their bite to check what specific needs your child has so we can provide one-of-a-kind care and adjustment. Once we’ve determined exactly what they require to achieve the best oral care, we will work with you for an agreed-upon treatment and course of action. The next step is getting your child their new appliance!
After Care Instructions
After your child receives their new appliance, they will need a few days to get used to the sensation, but don’t worry! It won’t be long before they become second nature for your child to wear. If the discomfort is more severe, we do recommend your child consider over-the-counter pain medication to ease the discomfort for the first few days. We also recommend applying braces wax to cover the regions of their mouth that may be susceptible to irritation.
We encourage you to help your child maintain a healthy mouth while wearing braces. Brushing around brackets and wires might be tricky at first, so you will want to supervise and maybe even assist them in removing any food particles stuck behind their appliances. There are special tools you can find at many drug stores that can aid in the process of removing food particles, but these are not always necessary with diligent care and daily brushing. We advise them to spend an extra few minutes brushing and flossing their teeth each day to remove any food particles or bacteria that may have gotten stuck there. We don’t want your child’s treatment to be hampered by decay. As their caregiver, be sure they clean and floss their teeth at least twice a day to keep their braces in good condition so they can achieve their ideal smile!
Often, there are some diet changes that come with wearing braces to ensure the appliances are not damaged. Braces can easily become damaged if your child consumes foods that are too hard, chewy, or sticky. If your child can avoid these types of foods, you can avoid a special visit or prolonged treatment that could happen when you have to get their damaged appliance fixed. Your child’s comfort is our primary concern, even if there are no actual orthodontic emergencies, so take care to avoid these foods to enjoy the best possible outcome for your child’s smile!
Braces Options For Kids
- Metal Braces – Metal Braces are a classic orthodontic treatment option that has been popular for decades. They’re perfect for treating both big and small oral health issues and have a high rate of success. We offer you a customized experience with a wide array of color options to choose from.
- Clear Braces – We can use ceramic brackets that blend in with the natural color of your smile to provide a more discreet appearance than traditional metal braces. These clear options offer an equally as effective treatment; however, they are slightly less durable than the traditional metal variety.
- Damon® Bracket System Braces – No matter what braces you choose, metal or clear, we have the ability to use the Damon bracket sliding-door technology known as “self-ligation” when applying your child’s appliance. This technique allows the wire to slide back and forth within the bracket and creates less friction and greater comfort for your child. Damon braces often reduce both treatment time and the number of adjustments that are performed, leaving you more time to enjoy yourself with your family!