Is it time to get braces for kids? This is a question that parents often ask dentists. They ask for their children and many also ask for themselves.
What do dentists say about the time to get braces for kids?
There is no “one size fits all” answer for this question. Timing for braces depends on the issues that braces are correcting along with personal preferences on wanting an attractive smile and treatment options.
Years ago, dentists waited for children’s permanent teeth to come in before fitting them for braces. The right time to get braces for kids would most likely occur between the ages of 8 and 14. More recently, there has been a trend to have a child evaluated for braces no later than age 7. (Mayo Clinic)
Reasons to wait
Sometimes when a dentist fits a child with braces early on, another phase of orthodontic treatment is also needed a few years later. The child could end up with double the years of orthodontic treatment, which is also more expensive.
Reasons not to wait
Sometimes a dentist can extract baby teeth and use braces instead of an expander to move teeth, and this approach is more effective.
What do braces correct?
Braces correct a number of different dental problems, mostly related to your bite. There is also the question of whether you’re most concerned about the appearance or the function of the teeth. Braces can correct:
- Open bite
- Overjet (protruding teeth)
- Crooked teeth
There are different options and approaches as well. You don’t have to have metal hardware all over your teeth either because today’s options include invisible wires and brackets and sometimes clear aligners like Six Month Smiles® will accomplish what you’re looking for.
Do You Have Questions About Dental Care for Your Child?
At Hutto Hippo Family Dental, we are glad to discuss treatment options to help you decide on the best time to get braces for your kids.