Should My Kid Get Braces in Middle School or High School?

The timing for orthodontic treatment is different for everyone, and what one kid may feel comfortable with another might not. There are several things to take into account when going over braces options for your child, and including them in the conversation is key. 

Developmentally speaking, most experts advise kids to stop by the orthodontist around age seven. This stage of dental growth allows orthodontics to evaluate if a child might need orthodontic treatment at any point, whether with early intervention or braces later in their teens. 

Whatever the case may be, involving your child in the decision is an important part of the process. Get to know their concerns regarding orthodontic treatment and go over some of the options available to them. Your child may be surprised to learn they have more of a say in what happens with their smile than they realize, and you may be surprised at what there is to choose from.

Traditional Silver Braces

Traditional metal braces are still alive and well, and are the go-to pick for many people who undergo orthodontic treatment. Your child might be a little uneasy when it comes to making the move to metal braces. The look alone can be intimidating, but some kids might also be worried about the discomfort and the restrictions on eating. Selling your kid on a new smile can be difficult, but if you go over the aesthetically pleasing options available, the rest of the conversation will be a breeze.

Fun Braces Options

Many orthodontists now offer alternatives to silver metal braces like gold braces, colored braces, clear brackets, and even WildSmiles and Mascot Braces. At Smith Orthodontics, pre-teens and teens can bling-out their braces with different shaped brackets. Options include hearts, stars, flowers, footballs, diamonds, and sports balls. Kids can get creative with their grins and help make the process fun. 

Mascot Braces are a great choice for teens who decide to get braces and they can deck out their smiles by representing their favorite teams. Being able to personalize your braces and choose which look is the right fit for you can help the journey of straightening your smile be a little more customizable and exciting.

When It’s Time to Get Braces

Make sure to show your child before and after photos of previous patients and help them understand it is worth all the hard work. Ask them what specific questions they have and set up a virtual consultation to go over them with your orthodontist. 

Talk about your child’s grin goals and when they would like to have a new smile to show off. Do they want to be braces-free before a certain big event like prom or senior photos? Do they want to wait until they’re a little older before getting treatment? Unless it is a medical emergency, the timing of getting orthodontic treatment is fluid in nature. 

Let your child know braces are an option if they want to invest in their smiles and allow them to take the lead. There are no right or wrong answers, and having a conversation with your orthodontist and child can help alleviate any fears or anxieties that may be on their mind. As the industry stays in step with developments in technology, more options and styles are hitting the market. Stay in-the-know about what is out there and keep an open line of communication with your kid so you know how they’re feeling about getting braces.