For many children, getting braces is a huge deal. Many parents want to know: how do I know if my child is ready for braces? Here are some tips to make sure that your child is ready to get started with orthodontic treatment.
Understanding the WHY behind braces
There are lots of reasons why your child could need braces, and it’s important for them to understand why. The best way to achieve this is by visiting an orthodontist for a consultation. With the help of photographs or radiographs taken during their orthodontic consult, we can show them the issues they are dealing with and have an open conversation about why it is important to fix them! Having children fully grasp their need for orthodontic intervention can play a big role in compliance later on in their orthodontic journey.
Bring a list of questions!
Kids are full of questions! Before your orthodontic consultation, have your child compile a list of questions to ask the orthodontist before their braces go on. A very anxious child may need to have these questions answered prior to the appointment day. If this is the case, have them call their questions in or book an appointment to chat with the orthodontist or orthodontic dental hygienist to have their questions thoroughly and accurately answered. We love talking to our patients, and want to make sure there are no reservations prior to getting started!
Watch videos online – involve technology!
Once all questions are answered, your child should be feeling more at ease. There are many resources online that show how braces are put on, how they’re taken off, and how other appliances are used. Although every orthodontist may use different products or techniques, the basics are the same and your child will get a better idea of what to expect at their appointment. See if your orthodontist has any videos that they recommend watching. Try watching videos that are pertinent to the exact appliance or type of braces your child is getting, this will avoid confusion when the time comes to have the appliances or braces placed.
Focus on the benefits
Be supportive! Having a positive attitude is key for many things in life, including orthodontic treatment. With most orthodontic treatment there are some adjustments that need to be made, having a positive outlook as a parent or guardian will help children feel comfortable and ready to get started.
Patience is a virtue when it comes to orthodontic treatment, communicate early on to children that (most of the time) changes won’t happen overnight. Support your child by taking photos to help track progress. Have friends or family members that have completed orthodontic treatment show your child their before and after photos. Get involved in contests or draws put on by your orthodontic office and always be sure to stock up on comfort items (wax, soft foods etc.)
Make sure brushing and flossing are A+
Make sure your child is prepared for some pretty large responsibilities during their orthodontic treatment. Poor brushing and flossing can lead to build up of plaque around the brackets and under the wire. To put it simply, if plaque is left on the teeth too long it can cause permanent damage to your teeth! Upon placing the braces or orthodontic appliances, your orthodontist or orthodontic hygienist will demonstrate how to brush, floss and keep oral health a priority during treatment. It is imperative that your child be ready to commit time and energy into keeping their mouths clean.
Making your child as comfortable as possible will not only ease the transition into orthodontic treatment, but it may even make it seem fun! Good communication and a little research can go a long way. If take the above tips into consideration, your child will be prepared for braces in no time. We’d love to get your child started on their journey, so please call us at 902-406-2406 to book a free consultation, or get in touch online at paradigmsmile.com. We can’t wait to hear from you!