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Adolescents and Children + Tooth Misalignments + Braces = Beautiful Smile

Society today places an extreme importance on appearances. Having a great smile is key to your child’s growth in social settings and in future career prospects. Having braces to correct alignment of teeth and to give self-confidence early in life will certainly help your child to be more successful later on in life. First impressions, enhanced by a pleasing smile, are a major determining factor to the outcome of a job interview. Who can resist a dazzling smile! Not only do braces help achieve an improvement in cosmetic appearance when your child is an adult but it makes brushing teeth easier. Bad teeth alignments oftentimes prevent children from brushing properly. Consequently, bacteria can develop in areas where the toothbrush cannot reach and eventually can cause loss of teeth. Be vigilant about your child’s oral health because it can make an impact on his or her future. Let us help you help your child to a brighter and healthier future.

Does having braces early in life cause low self- esteem for your child?

Did you know your child may be able to wear braces before becoming a teenager? These are the years when children are less concerned about their appearances, a time that may be ideally suited for your child to wear braces. You may wonder, "what if my child needs braces during the teen years, will this cause my teen to be more self-conscious?" Good news! The braces of yester-year have drastically changed. No more glaring, bulky metal braces. Traditional braces today have smaller and more refined brackets. Other types of braces are less noticeable and easier to wear than the braces from the past. We, at Rensselaer Dentists, offer a variety of braces. These are exciting times in the science of orthodontics with cutting edge techniques in bracing for children and orthodontics for adults. An individualized orthodontic plan at Rensselaer Dentists for braces can be developed for your child with a scheduled consultation.

What age should children start wearing braces?

The American Association of Orthodontists recommends that a child should be screened no later than seven years of age. At this time it can be determined when your child should be wearing braces according to the AAO (American Association of Orthodontics). The AAO recommends that children start wearing braces as young as eight years old. The age to start wearing braces is determined by what type of malocclusion (bad bite) your child has. Certain types of malocclusions call for early treatment with braces. Whereas other types of teeth alignments require braces during the teen years.

What age is appropriate for bracing with certain types of malocclusions (bad bites)?

Malocclusion Type 1

This is the group which most children fall into. The misalignment of teeth in type 1 is a result of overcrowding teeth which causes a crooked alignment. Various problems can arise from a crooked alignment because it causes improper chewing while eating, resulting in premature wearing of the teeth. Gum disease and cavities can also form because of the crooked teeth alignment preventing the toothbrush from reaching certain areas. This type of misalignment can be treated early in childhood with braces.

Malocclusion Type 2

This misalignment of teeth is caused by an overbite. It has been found that there is no advantage for this type of malocclusion being treated in early childhood. In other words, braces are usually recommended for teenage years.

Malocclusion Type 3

This misalignment is caused by an under bite of the upper or lower jaw. It is recommended that treatment begin early in childhood while the process of jaw growth may be changed. After ten years old it is too late to change the growth pattern of the structure of the jaw. It is highly recommended with this type of misalignment that braces are put on at an early age.

Three Types of Children Braces

Traditional Braces: The modern traditional braces offered consist of small square brackets composed of stainless metal, synthetic composites, or ceramics. These brackets bond to each tooth and anchor the arch wire which produces pressure on the teeth for movement. This movement will allow the teeth to align in a straight formation. The orthodontic plan for traditional braces includes a series of arch wires and elastics (rubber bands). Adolescents oftentimes add their own personal style to traditional braces with colored elastics. At the same time, ceramic brackets offer braces which will blend in with the tooth color to obtain a more natural effect. Traditional braces have come a long way in appearance and comfort. This is the most popular type of braces on the market today.

Lingual Braces: After these braces are put on your adolescent it may be hard to believe that braces are even there. The brackets are applied to the back of each tooth so the brackets cannot be detected. These brackets are tailored to fit each patient’s mouth. Check with Rensselaer Dentists to determine if this is a good option for your child.

Invisalign: Invisalign is recommended for teens with certain types of malocculsions. Invisalign has devised braces for teens called Invisalign Teen. This type of bracing takes all the pressures off being self- conscious because these braces do not attach to your teeth. Invisalign braces have a series of clear plastic aligner trays for achieving that wonderful smile you want for your children. They are comfortable and require less office visits to the orthodontist. This also provides more free time for you and your teen. Because the aligner trays are removable it makes eating and brushing teeth easier.

Rensselaer Dentists will map out an orthodontic plan for your adolescent's teeth misalignment. Rensselaer will guide you every step of the way throughout the treatment plan with easy to follow instructions. Do not wait, make an appointment for your child today.