Children should usually start having regular dental checkups from the age of two. Screening for tooth and jaw abnormalities is introduced gradually as the child’s development progresses and your dentist will know if and when your child needs to be referred to an orthodontist for assessment.
How young is too young to start considering braces?
Most corrective treatment for tooth abnormalities is initiated after the child has changed all baby teeth to permanent ones – around the age of 10-11. Imperfectly aligned teeth are normal as teeth are being changed, since permanent teeth are growing into a limited space in a young jaw that only catches up as the child develops. Some braces that influence jaw growth and help correct misaligned jaws may be started as early as six years of age.
What are the different kinds of braces?
Removable braces are simple appliances that help correct mild tooth position problems. Fixed braces in their various designs are the standard of care when more important malocclusions (tooth and jaw imperfections) are being treated. Functional appliances are usually employed to treat developmental jaw abnormalities and some habits (such as tongue thrust) at an earlier stage than other braces, and in many instances are followed by further orthodontic treatment.
Should braces be considered only for aesthetic reasons?
While aesthetics are the primary reason for the demand for orthodontic treatment, braces help correct or prevent many other issues, such as chewing abnormalities, speech development problems, and possible future complications related to an unbalanced bite
How long will my child be wearing braces for?
Typically, orthodontic treatment takes between 1 and 3 years, depending on the severity of the original situation.
Is it ever too late to consider braces?
The earlier orthodontic treatment is commenced following the establishment of permanent dentition, the shorter the duration of treatment will be. However, there is no upper limit the age at which orthodontic treatment can be commenced.