Most parents think that early adolescence is the best age for your child to get braces. But even if 10-14 is the most popular time for kids to begin their treatment, it may not be right for your child. Orthodontic treatment is a flexible approach that can straighten teeth and help create a beautiful smile at all stages of life.
If you’re considering braces or Invisalign treatment for your child, here’s what you should know about the best age to get braces — and about some of the benefits derived from starting orthodontic treatment at the time that is right for you.
Best Age to Begin Orthodontic Treatment
Most orthodontists believe that between the ages of 10 and 14 is the ideal time for children to get braces. Pre-teens usually have all (or almost all) adult teeth. Plus, softer jawbones make teeth easier to reposition. That said, the age at which YOUR son or daughter should begin treatment hinges on two key factors:
- How extensive the treatment needs
- Whether most permanent teeth have erupted
Braces are usually considered the most effective and treatment the least time-consuming for kids during this time period. Later (i.e. after second molars have begun to come in) and treatment could take more time and require more visits. But many of our patients don’t begin treatment until high school and still experience great outcomes. If you’re not sure, give our team a call to discuss!
What About Orthodontics for Younger Kids?
While we’ve outlined that the “ideal” age for many to begin orthodontic treatment is 10-14 years of age, the American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) recommends that young people see an orthodontic specialist for the first time no later than age 7. Why?
When Dr. Cherry notices bite misalignments or jaw issues in younger kids, he can start what is called “early intervention treatment”. Early orthodontic treatment can help get a head start on dental issues so that you actually save time and money when it’s time for braces later on.
Early orthodontic treatment typically means orthodontic care that is applied before your child has all of his or her adult teeth. The aim of this early intervention care — typically occurring when kids are 7-10 years of age — is to get a head-start on easy-to-fix alignment and spacing issues when teeth or more responsive. It also lays the groundwork for an easier second round of care.
Early orthodontic treatment for young people often means wearing a retainer. It may also include wearing:
* A palatal expander that creates more space
* A growth modifying appliance
* Temporary braces
To put it simply, orthodontic treatment for younger kids can help correct underlying structural issues, sooner, so that braces can straighten teeth and fix teeth alignment more quickly and more easily later on.
Take the First Step On Your Journey
Whether you already know that your child needs braces or not, the professionals at Cherry Orthodontics have the experience and expertise to help you select the option that’s right for your son or daughter! We are specialists at straightening teeth for both children and adults and take pride in our ability to create beautiful smiles that will last a lifetime. Begin your journey by calling our office in Bethlehem at (484) 265-9380 or our office in Schnecksville at (484) 265-9380, or schedule an appointment online today! We’ll help you select the treatment option that’s best for you or your loved one.