Getting braces has become a rite of passage for children. Every year, millions of children in America get braces or some sort of an orthodontic treatment.
When your child is getting braces, it is a huge event for the whole family. Orthodontic treatment for children means that the parents also need to educate themselves on the treatment.
Here are a few things to keep in mind when it’s time for your child to get an orthodontic treatment:
At What Age Should Your Child Visit the Orthodontist?
The American Association of Orthodontists recommends that children have their first check-up with an orthodontist no later than age 7.
This is the age when a child’s permanent teeth start coming in. If your child is at risk of developing any orthodontic problems, they can be diagnosed at their earliest stages. This can help the orthodontist predetermine the plan of action if your child will need orthodontic treatment.
Prepare Your Child For Their First Appointment
Walk your child through what will happen on their first visit to make sure sitting in a dental chair doesn’t scare them off. Talk them through the process of how their first appointment will involve a pain-free examination.
What to Expect From Your Child’s First Visit
The first visit to the orthodontist will be a basic examination of your child’s teeth, mouth, jaw, and evaluation of treatment options if the orthodontist spots a problem.
The orthodontist will also take X-rays of the mouth to see how the teeth are positioned, and whether permanent teeth are going to come in. The orthodontist will also take impressions of your child’s teeth with a mold which will be the exact replica of your child’s teeth. This will help your orthodontist decide which treatment options are best.
Your child will not be getting braces on the first visit itself. The first visit is just an evaluation of whether braces are needed and if they are, what course the braces treatment should take.
What Will You Learn from Your Child’s First Orthodontic Visit
The first time you take your child to see an orthodontist, you’ll learn whether they need orthodontic treatment and what braces treatment options are available and best suited for your child’s needs.
The options include:
- Metal braces
- Ceramic braces
If your child doesn’t need treatment to correct an improper smile, then your orthodontist will schedule periodic visits to make sure your child’s permanent teeth are coming in properly.
Explain to Your Child What Braces Treatment Will Involve
If your child needs to undergo braces treatment, it will be great for your child to understand how braces or Invisalign can straighten crooked teeth, imbalanced jaw structures, and improve the smile so that your child becomes more confident.
It might be useful for your child to talk to a peer who is also going through braces treatment and using braces to correct an improper smile. Your child might be more open to braces treatment if it is easier to relate with their peers and stay enthusiastic about getting braces.
If your child is going through orthodontic treatment, remember that dealing with your child’s questions and doubts with patience is the key. The earlier your child sees the orthodontist, the lesser time treatment will take.
Creating perfect smiles is what Dr. Satish Pai is committed to. An orthodontist by profession, he believes that a perfect smile is a powerful part of a person’s personality. When he is not working hard on perfecting his patients’ smiles at Putnam Ortho, he is busy writing engaging articles about everything related to healthy and perfect smiles. His other passions include golf, yoga and surfing. Spending time with his family always brings a smile on his face.
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