You’re considering getting braces for your child. But before you do, you want to be clear on a few things. For instance, how long will your child have to wear braces?
That’s a great question and one that we can answer as well. So, without further ado, here’s how long your child will have to wear braces for their teeth.
How Long Does a Child Need to Wear Braces?
Generally speaking, a child will need to wear braces between one and two years in duration. Note, though, that the exact duration is different for everyone, as some teeth take longer to straighten than others.
The only way you can find out for sure is to visit an orthodontist and have him assess your child’s teeth. The orthodontist will then devise a straightening plan and will be able to estimate the amount of time that it will take.
When Should A Child Get Braces?
You now know how long a child needs to wear braces. The next question is: when do kids get braces? What’s the appropriate age?
Generally speaking, it’s after the child has lost his or her baby teeth. Note, though, that there are exceptions in which braces can be used before all baby teeth have been lost.
As far as an age range goes, we’re talking between 8 and 14. And it’s better to use them sooner rather than later. While they still work for those above the age of 14, they take a much longer time to facilitate the desired effect.
Does Your Child Need Braces?
Next, you might be wondering: does your child actually need braces? That depends on a variety of factors, the most prominent of which include the following.
Are Your Child’s Teeth Crooked?
The primary reason to get braces is to straighten the teeth. It generally doesn’t have anything to do with the functionality of the teeth. It’s more about the way the teeth look.
Modern society puts a premium on a straight, white smile. So, if you want your child to possess the most socially acceptable look possible, make sure that they get braces.
Are Your Child’s Adult Teeth Coming in Late?
Another sign that your child might need braces is that their adult teeth are coming in late. If this is happening, there’s a chance that said teeth could grow crookedly. This could cause them to apply pressure to the other teeth, resulting in all sorts of tooth-related issues, some of which can affect the teeth’ functionality.
Does Your Child Have Too Many Teeth?
In some cases, a child will end up with too many adult teeth. When this occurs, the mouth becomes crowded, causing issues with bite and alignment.
As such, it’s sometimes necessary to extract additional teeth and use braces to bring the remaining teeth closer together. Your child’s dentist can help you determine whether or not this is necessary.
Does Your Child Have Tooth Alignment Issues?
There are all sorts of tooth alignment issues that could plague a child. The most obvious (and detrimental) of these issues are underbites and overbites. Not only can issues such as these disturb the aesthetic of a smile, but they can also cause great pain and functional trouble over time.
Fortunately, braces can be used to fix these issues, allowing for a sound bite and functional perfection.
Types of Dental Braces
For years, there was only one legitimate option for braces. That one option was, of course, metal braces. But these days, there are several options available, all of which we’ll discuss below.
We’ve already alluded to metal braces. These are the braces that most people think of when they think of dental braces. They’re positioned on the front of the teeth and are slowly moved with the help of a tightened wire.
Though they’re highly effective, they’re not necessarily the best to look at. As such, many kids hope to avoid them.
Growing in popularity every year are Invisalign braces. These are clear, plastic braces that fit directly over the teeth. They blend in seamlessly, not altering the look of the teeth in any way.
Like metal braces, they’re highly effective. However, they can’t be used to correct all forms of malocclusion. If your child’s teeth are particularly crooked, you’ll likely have to opt for a metal option instead.
Invisalign braces can be taken out. This is both a blessing and a curse. If your child is careful about putting them back in after meals and tooth brushing, everything will turn out alright. If your child forgets to put them back in, treatment will experience delays.
Ceramic braces are just like metal braces, except they’re made out of ceramic as opposed to metal. They sit on the front of the teeth and are tightened with a wire. The difference is that they’re white in appearance and tend to blend in better with the look of natural teeth.
Ceramic braces are a little more expensive than metal ones. But if your child is sensitive about having a mouth full of metal, that added expense could be worth it.
Lingual braces are metal braces that fit on the back of the teeth. The obvious benefit to this is that they’re not usually visible. Note, though, that lingual braces can’t fix severe malocclusion, not to mention they’re fairly expensive as well.
Ready to Let Your Child Wear Braces?
And there it is, that’s how long children usually have to wear braces. Ready to get dental braces for your child? Then head to the closest orthodontist and get the process started.
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