Braces and orthodontists are commonly associated with teenagers and young adults because they are who you usually see wearing them. Yet, more and more children, tweens, and pre-teens are receiving orthodontic treatment than ever before in an effort to either correct existing issues or stop problems before they have a chance to begin.
While you might think that it’s too early for your child to visit an orthodontist, know that they don’t absolutely have to pursue treatment now. By looking at some of the good reasons why your child should visit the orthodontist, however, we think you’ll be convinced that it’s at least worth making an appointment to figure out your options. At best, you’ll be starting the path to straight teeth early and possibly preventing the need for expensive future treatments. At worst, you’ll know that there’s nothing to worry about for your little one!
Growing Bones Often Need a Head Start
Until we’re adults, our bones are still growing and forming their final shapes. This includes things like your teeth and jaw, and how they might form into your final bite shape. Because your child is still growing and their bones are not fully formed, this can give an orthodontist the perfect window to help guide your child’s teeth and jaw toward an amazing smile – if their bones are not naturally going in that direction. If your child has teeth that are not yet erupted, starting preliminary treatments at an early age can easily help prevent crowding and other issues from occurring.
Minimize Secondary Concerns
Sometimes, it’s hard to qualify what problems a child might have until some of their adult teeth come in. From awkward speech patterns to eating problems and damaged teeth, once it’s apparent that their jaw or bite is causing issues, then it is easier to fix at an early age rather than later. Typically, these problems will get worse over time, and instead of waiting many years for the problem to mature and deepen, a small set of braces or other orthodontic treatment can help prevent secondary concerns from causing your child undue pain. It’s a high-quality investment in their comfort and well-being for the long haul.
You’ve Got Time to Bring Them
Something that we don’t often think about is how much time we have with our children when they’re younger. Once kids start to mature and begin spending more time with friends, we may lose their attention and have trouble guiding them towards the path that would be best for them. If you get a child braces at a younger age, they are more likely to follow proper care and treatment guidelines under your supervision. Comparatively, a busy teen is harder to schedule appointments for, and a disorganized young adult might not follow their orthodontist’s guidelines like they should, which could prolong treatment and become expensive. Because you have them under your complete care and guidance now while they are still little, it can sometimes be easier to seek treatments such as braces when both of you can be on the same page and are emotionally closer.
Braces Are More Common Than Ever
More than 3.5 million American kids and teenagers start wearing braces each year. What was once an odd treatment that made kids feel self-conscious has become an accepted – and even encouraged or trendy – part of growing up. Children and teens now proudly display their braces in photographs or take out their Invisalign aligners when eating, knowing that they’re on the path to straight teeth and an awesome smile. Your child won’t be stereotyped as unusual or awkward just because they have braces, even at a younger age. They might even be praised for it!
It’s Never Too Late to Start
When it comes to giving your child the best start in life, nothing’s ever too early, is it? Luckily, the price of braces continues to be more affordable while the treatment gets better and better each year. Even if your child doesn’t need treatment now, it’s highly recommended to take him or her for an appointment and get the “all clear” sign rather than to wonder if you should have started now. Because children are still developing, it can be a good time to catch problem areas early and not have to correct them later. When you’re ready to make an appointment, be sure to contact Stork Orthodontics for transparency and a doctor who will take a more caring and compassionate look at your child’s teeth.