When considering the best braces for kids, it is important to take into account their age, maturity level, and type of defect. Younger children may not yet be mature enough to wear removable aligners, whereas an adult might have better self-motivation to follow through with treatment.
Additionally, the type of dental issue being treated should factor into the decision; certain types of issues are not advised to be treated with aligners for children and could require traditional braces as opposed to clear systems.
Before visiting an orthodontist, parents need to have a basic understanding of what kind of braces or other treatments may be available for their child’s specific condition. With good preparation, conversations with orthodontists can become more productive and yield better results for the patient.
What Age is the Best for Braces? When is the Earliest You Can Get Braces?
According to an article by the American Association of Orthodontists, it is recommended that a child’s first check-up with an orthodontist should be undertaken when an issue with their teeth is first recognized, which should be no later than the age of seven.
Research shows that a child who is aged seven would more than likely have enough permanent teeth that would allow an orthodontist to do a proper evaluation of the development of the jaws and teeth.
When it comes to braces, the best age largely depends on the individual and their dental health. This is especially true if a child has a pronounced overbite or underbite, breathing problems, or facial imbalances. If early checkups do not appear necessary, initial consultation with an orthodontist can be scheduled any time after this to assess for possible treatment in the future.
Unless there are severe misalignment issues, treatment with braces typically starts anywhere between 10 to 14 years old. The ideal age depends on the individual’s mouth and jaw development as well as other factors such as overcrowding and potential bite issues.
See our article: Different Kinds of Braces.
Are Metal Braces Best Braces for Kids?
Metal braces are a preferred dental treatment for children of all ages, as they offer consistent results and remain cost-effective.
Braces apply pressure to the teeth to make them move into their desired positions and require frequent visits with an orthodontist to adjust the tension of the wires. While this can be time-consuming, metal braces have a long track record of effectiveness when compared to other types of braces.
However, the metal brackets must stay on the teeth for several years and require a certain level of maintenance; parents or guardians will need to ensure that their child brushes and flosses regularly throughout the process. While this may not be overly convenient, it is necessary to prevent staining or decalcification.
Clear braces are an invisible orthodontic solution that allows children to straighten their teeth discreetly. Clear braces consist of brackets and archwires, which are made of a transparent material instead of metal, and offer the same corrective benefits as traditional metallic options.
Some pros for wearing clear braces include minimal discomfort, increased comfort when eating and speaking, little to no visibility against the natural color of teeth, and fewer trips to the orthodontist for adjustments or repairs.
On the flip side, clear braces tend to be slightly more expensive than traditional metallic ones, may require more attention in terms of cleaning requirements, and can break more easily during some activities.
Clear aligners offer a great option for children who need to fix their teeth alignment. One of the major advantages of clear aligners is that they are virtually invisible and comfortable to wear throughout the day.
When a child is in their teens the aesthetic appeal of teeth straightening treatment is much more of an issue so clear aligners are an excellent orthodontic solution that can be used to obtain a straighter, healthier smile, whilst providing an almost undetectable appearance.
These orthodontic treatments correct smiles without having to visit multiple appointments or rely on irritating wires and brackets.
See our article: Invisible Braces for Kids.
However, the downside is that you may not be able to treat more complex dental misalignments with this type of appliance and they may not be suitable for younger children as they may struggle to adhere to all the rules of the treatment, particularly when not under the direct supervision of parents or guardians. Moreover, wearing aligners for 22 hours a day can prove challenging for kids.
Here are some reviews of the best invisible aligners available:
Byte Review – The top pick of this aligner is the most affordable option and has a lifetime guarantee. This product also includes a free HyperBite and teeth whitening kit with every purchase.
NewSmile Review – A low-cost option but with premium aesthetics this aligner includes a free retainer and teeth whitening kit.
SmileDirectClub Review – The most popular product that also has the most precise 3D scanning process and includes a free one-time replacement guarantee.
Candid Review – The most similar to Invisalign aligners with hybrid in-office care this product has great reviews from its customers.
ALIGNERCO -The best-priced option that comes with a zero deposit option for monthly payment plans. A seasonal discount for aligner packages is available for just $945.
Partial braces are an effective orthodontic tool for children who require a lighter approach to straightening their teeth or correcting mild bite issues. While metal or ceramic brackets and wires are still used, they only cover some of the teeth, usually the top set at the front, and can be removed much more easily than traditional braces.
The pros of this treatment include lower cost, improved comfort, greater discretion, less tooth staining, and easier maintenance.
However, partial braces do not offer corrections as effectively as full bracket systems, may need to be replaced more often, and are unlikely to work for those with more complicated orthodontic needs.
Self-ligating braces are a great option for children looking to straighten their teeth. Contrary to traditional braces, self-ligating braces have a mechanism that allows the wire to move freely resulting in less friction and subsequent discomfort for the patient.
While more expensive than traditional braces, self-ligating braces require fewer adjustment visits with the orthodontist. Since they are less intrusive, there is no need for additional bands or springs, resulting in a clean appearance.
The primary downside of these types of braces is that they can be slightly uncomfortable due to differences in size and shape from traditional brackets.
Lingual braces are a popular orthodontic treatment option among children as they are virtually undetectable, meaning that the child’s peers won’t even know they are wearing them.
Each brace is tailored to fit the individual patient’s unique tooth structure and mouth configuration for optimal results. Though the benefits of lingual braces include discrete treatment and irritation-free adjustments, one downside can be the cost as they are usually more expensive than traditional braces. Another downside can be difficulty in keeping the brackets and wires clean due to their placement behind the teeth.
However, with regular brushing, flossing, and consistent dental appointments, lingual braces can be an excellent choice when looking to straighten your child’s teeth.
See our Incognito Braces Vs Invisalign Comparison.
Mini braces provide a great solution for young kids who may not be ready for traditional braces but need corrective dental treatment to get their teeth healthy and properly aligned.
These tiny metal brackets are bonded directly to the teeth, offering a more discrete option than larger metal brackets that require bands around the teeth. Kids can enjoy improved confidence during their time wearing mini braces, as these smaller devices provide a more natural look.
While mini braces offer some great benefits for children, such as fewer food traps and easier cleaning compared to conventional braces, they usually cost more and the results may not be as long-lasting in younger patients still growing permanent teeth. Additionally, mini braces can place stress on baby teeth roots, creating instability that can affect adult teeth and position.
Braces for Kids – Choose Wisely
Braces are an important decision for children and their parents. Being mindful of the best choice requires careful consideration of different types and options.
Factors to consider when making this decision include efficiency, cost, maintenance, and aesthetic appeal. Depending on the age of the child and the approximate timeline for treatment completion can also be an influencing factor.
Choosing the right type of braces for your child should not be taken lightly; researching various options thoroughly and consulting an experienced orthodontist is key in ensuring that your child receives high-quality treatment that meets their needs while providing desirable results.
Frequently Asked Questions:
Which Braces are the Best for Kids?
Traditional metal braces have been around for decades and provide a great solution for correcting serious misalignment of teeth. However, modern orthodontic options are much less noticeable and offer added comfort.
Clear braces, lingual braces, or aligners might be a better choice for children seeking discreet tooth correction.
Are Clear Aligners or Regular Braces Better for Kids?
Clear aligners provide an inconspicuous treatment process compared to traditional braces, but regular braces may be better for more severe dental work that requires adjustment of several teeth.
Ultimately it should be discussed with a professional orthodontist who can tailor the choice based on individual needs.
Can Kids Wear Clear Braces?
Clear braces are becoming increasingly popular for children due to their near-invisibility and affordability. The traditional metal braces serve the same purpose, but many parents find them aesthetically unappealing and want something that kids can wear without embarrassment.
There is little difference in terms of effectiveness between clear braces and traditional ones, so they are a good choice for younger patients who need orthodontic correction. Most orthodontists recommend clear braces as they are more comfortable than metal ones, making them well-suited to young patients.
At What Age do Most Children Start Wearing Braces?
The average age that children begin the process of wearing braces is between 10 and 14.
At these ages, the child’s permanent teeth have typically grown in, making it a great time to identify any potential issues with their bite that braces can help fix. Early intervention is typically recommended as it can often lead to better long-term outcomes with less treatment needed than if they wait until they are older.