Did you know that about 75% of kids will experience some type of teeth issue once their adult teeth have all grown in? In some cases, the issue is minor enough that it doesn’t need addressing, but in most cases kids should wear some sort of orthodontic appliance to help fix their teeth alignment and spacing. If your child needs braces to straighten their teeth, now is a great time to get started!
Why Kids Need Braces
Kids need braces when their adult teeth grow in and aren’t properly aligned or spaced.
When a person bites, their top front teeth should sit slightly and comfortably in front of their bottom front teeth. The top side and back teeth should align on top of the bottoms.
An overbite results when the top front teeth are significantly in front of the bottom front teeth. An underbite results when the top front teeth sit behind the bottom front teeth.
Long term effects of an over- or underbite include chronic jaw pain, teeth and gum health issues, speech impediments, and difficulty with sleeping.
Also, getting your child’s teeth straightened and aligned is not only important for their oral health but for their self-esteem.
The Process for Getting Braces
The process for getting braces actually starts well before your dentist glues the brackets to your teeth, often weeks before but sometimes months before.
Dentists won’t start the process for getting braces on until your child’s adult teeth have started to come in. This usually between the ages of 10 – 13, but varies from child to child.
During an initial consultation, your family dentist will examine your child’s teeth and determine the appropriate timing when braces can be put on.
In some cases, some of the back molars may need to be shifted. Molars acts as the anchor points for the braces, so your child’s molars must be properly placed before braces can be attached. This may require your child wear headgear or elastics before the braces are put on.
Once the molars are in place, the rest of the braces can be attached and the straightening of the rest of the teeth can start.
Why Now is a Great Time to Start Your Child’s Braces
Kids feel very self-conscious when they get braces, they feel like everyone is looking at them. So, the ideal time for them to get braces is during the summer vacation when they’re not seeing their friends as often. The transition back into school as the kid who got braces can get softened by the excitement of the new school year, new classmates and new teachers.
Summer is also a good time for your child to get braces because it gives them time to adjust to wearing braces. There will be a couple of days of discomfort and getting used to having braces in their mouths when they first get them, and they’ll need to spend extra time learning how to properly brush their teeth and take care of their braces, so the summer vacation months give this time without the rush of getting ready for school in the morning.
Because it can sometimes take a few weeks or couple of months of treatment before the braces actually get put on, the beginning of May is a good time to book a consultation with your family dentist to start talking about your child’s orthodontic needs.
Orion Dental provides a full range of dental services for the whole family, including braces, retainers or other orthodontic devices for your growing children. If your child needs braces and you’re thinking about when to get started, give us a call and book a consultation and let’s talk!