At Great Smiles, we believe that everyone deserves to have a confident, beautiful smile – braces may be exactly what your child needs to accomplish that. But how do you know if they need them? Read the tips below to know when you should make your child’s first appointment with an orthodontist.

What is the Best Age for Braces?
Generally, children as young as 7 can begin seeing an orthodontist – by 7 years old, many of their permanent teeth will have started growing and are visible on x-rays. That isn’t to say that they will necessarily need to get braces at the age of 7, it simply means it is time for you to look into the possibility that your child will need braces. Seeking an orthodontist early can help streamline the process, allowing orthodontists to develop a plan and appropriate schedule for your child’s dental requirements.

What are Signs My Child Needs Braces?
Your child might have alignment issues that only an orthodontist has been trained to see, but there might also be signs that are easily visible to the naked eye. Once permanent teeth start growing in, things to look out for are:

• Early or late loss of baby teeth
• Thumb or finger sucking
• Crowding or misplaced teeth
• Continual biting of the cheek or roof of the mouth
• Jaws and teeth that are out of proportion with the rest of the face

How Long Will They Need Braces?
The length of time needed for your own child’s orthodontics treatment will vary from person to person and depends on the severity of your child’s dental issues. Your orthodontist will be able to inform you about how long treatment will take, including whether or not retainers will be needed in addition to braces.

Do Braces Hurt?
When braces are first affixed to the teeth, it is not often painful, but teeth may be sore for a short period of time afterwards. Because braces adjust jaw alignment and space between teeth, the wearing of braces is not always the most comfortable, but most likely won’t be painful for your child.

Still Have Questions?
Our team of Orthodontists at Great Smiles are certified specialists, and we utilize the latest orthodontic treatment technology. If you have any questions or would like to make an appointment or arrange a consultation, call (858) 755-4223 or request an appointment online.