What is a Good Age to Get Braces

What is a Good Age to Get Braces

What Is a Good Age to Get Braces?

It seems to be common knowledge that dental braces are used to straighten and align teeth. But, did you know that braces can also better position your bite, as well as help with overall dental health? Braces can help with jaw and bite problems making it more comfortable to chew food. Likewise, crooked and crowded teeth are hard to clean. Braces move teeth back in line making them easier to clean and preventing cavities and gum disease in the future.

Another fact: Did you know that while kids are the most common orthodontic patients, they are not the only candidates for braces?

According to this article published by Stanford Children’s Health, “The best age varies from patient to patient. Orthodontic treatment most commonly begins between ages 9 and 14 because kids in this age range have at least some permanent teeth and are still growing.

The majority of orthodontic problems, such as crowding, too much space between teeth, protruding upper teeth, extra or missing teeth, and jaw growth problems may be inherited. Some other problems develop over time when children suck their thumbs or fingers, breathe through their mouths, or have poor dental hygiene, poor nutrition, or other problems.”

The article goes on to say that, “If your teeth are healthy, they can be moved at any age.” In fact, one in five orthodontic patients is an adult with an estimated one million adults in the U.S. and Canada currently being treated by members of the American Association of Orthodontists.

Who Will Provide Braces Treatment?

In some cases, both a dentist and an orthodontist can provide orthodontic treatments. But, more commonly, an orthodontist will treat misalignments in your teeth and jaws because that is their day-to-day focus.

Dating back to the mid-1800s, orthodontics is a dental specialty that deals with the alignment of the teeth and jaw. Orthodontic programs in the United States usually last two to three years (in addition to dental school) and graduates complete a written and clinical American Board of Orthodontics exam.

The American Dental Association says, “Orthodontic treatment may be provided by your dentist or an orthodontist, a dentist who specializes in the diagnosis, prevention, and treatment of dental and facial irregularities. It will depend on the orthodontic experience of your dentist and the severity of your case.”

Types of Braces

Today, there are several types of braces each accompanied by advantages and disadvantages. Here’s an example: Invisalign is a clear, removable aligner that has been used to treat more than three million patients. Some prefer this type of aligner because it is less noticeable and allows for greater freedom in eating and drinking. But this type of aligner only corrects minor dental problems and used by mostly teenagers and adults.

So, it’s important to remember that each type of orthodontic treatment comes with pros and cons. See below for a full list of options:

Length of Treatment

Similar to the answer for the appropriate age for braces, the length of treatment also varies. Factors that influence the length of treatment include:

The ADA says, “Treatment plans will vary based on your situation, but most people are in treatment from one to three years. This is followed by a period of wearing a retainer that holds teeth in their new positions. Today’s braces are more comfortable than ever before. Newer materials apply a constant, gentle force to move teeth and usually require fewer adjustments.”

Who to Call?

If you are interested in knowing more about orthodontic options for you or your child, schedule an appointment with your dentist to discuss the right treatment plans for you.