What's the Best Age for Braces?

As a parent, you may be wondering what age is the best to have your child start wearing braces. The answer depends, of course, on your individual child, but there are a couple of primary guidelines to follow when discussing this question. The best age for braces, backed by both science and experience, depends on three main parameters: jaw development, dental transition, and patient preferences. 

The jaw develops with age

We here at Fresh Dental Care want to ensure we align your child’s braces with his or her jaw development. The jaw develops with age, so braces have to be adjusted to fit with the changes that occur during development. This will also help maintain your child’s natural profile. In general, your child has experienced most of the major changes in jaw structure by age twelve for females, and slightly older for males. We also take a look at other features, such as whether he or she has an overbite or an underbite, that may need to be corrected and plan for how we can best resolve these issues. Our initial consultation takes each of these factors, and more, into account when we are deciding the perfect time to install your child’s braces.

Arrival of the tooth fairy

Your child experiences a dental transition when the baby teeth fall out and are replaced by adult teeth. The process begins at about six years old, usually with the central incisors, and it ends at about 12 years old when the first permanent molars erupt. 

The end of this transitional period is an optimal time to install your child’s braces; by forming and shaping the adult teeth, we ensure that the effects of braces are long-lasting throughout adulthood. If your child’s teeth aren’t falling out as early as other children’s, or if you’ve noticed that their jaw is already crooked by six years old, don’t fret. Our practice has methods to adjust your child’s teeth when they’re still mostly baby teeth, and we discuss the entire process with you in-person during your consultation. 

Your child has a say, too!

Along with the topics we’ve discussed, we also take your child’s preferences into consideration. Does your child play sports or have a summer camp experience planned? Will they be too self-conscious having braces on their teeth to smile or to take part? We take all this into account when we’re deciding if it’s the right time to install braces; it’s our goal to ensure your child has the smoothest and most comfortable experience possible.

Have questions about braces and whether it’s the right time for your child to get them? To schedule a consultation with our practice, either give our office a call or click the button to request an appointment online.

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