If you think back to when you were a child, you may remember kids getting braces in junior high or high school, but over the years, practices have changed. Now, children’s braces are becoming more popular at younger ages. However, the right treatment age varies based on your child’s unique needs. Here’s an overview of what you need to know.
The First Orthodontic Appointment
If your child has a noticeable issue, you may want to bring them to the orthodontist at a young age. This includes issues such as sucking their thumb which can lead to an overbite, but it also includes teeth alignment issues, unusual gaps, or any other noticeable orthodontic issues. In some cases, your dentist may notice these issues and recommend that you see the orthodontist about children’s braces.
Orthodontics When the Adult Teeth Erupt
Ideally, if you haven’t brought your child in at a young age for a specific issues, you should bring your child to an orthodontist when their adult teeth start to erupt. At this point, the orthodontist can start to tell if there is likely to be crowding or similar issues. For most kids, the adult teeth start to erupt around age seven, but for some kids, adult teeth don’t come until a little bit later and for others, they come a bit earlier.
What Happens at the First Orthodontic Appointment
Regardless of your child’s age, the first orthodontic appointment tends to take a similar format. Generally, the orthodontist starts with a visual exam of the mouth. They look at the teeth, gums, and the bite. To get a closer look at the situation, they may also take some X-rays or impressions of the teeth. Then, the orthodontist will start to talk with your about treatment options.
Often, your child may have to return to the dentist to have decay addressed, cavities filled, or teeth extracted. Then, they return to the orthodontist to work through the rest of the treatment. In some cases, patients need to get braces twice, once when they are young and once when they are in junior high or high school.
Having Children’s Braces Twice
For some children, it is necessary to have braces twice. This is an effective way to break up treatment into two sessions so that the child doesn’t have to have braces for an exceptionally long time during their teen years, and it also can help to avoid really complicated procedures such as jaw surgery or the extraction of multiple permanent teeth.
Generally, when someone gets children’s braces first, the first part of treatment is early intervention. That happens when they still have baby teeth in their mouth. Then, the braces are removed, and the second part of the treatment takes place when the child is older and after all of their adult teeth have erupted.
If you are worried about your child’s orthodontic health, make an appointment to talk about children’s braces with your orthodontist. However, it’s also important to remember that it’s never too late. If you are an adult who wants braces, we can also do that. Contact BB Braces Braces to learn more.