Teen girl with braces and doctor with patient in background.Although braces may seem like a solely cosmetic treatment, there are a lot of reasons your orthodontist may request this route of treatment for your teen’s teeth.

One of the most common reasons orthodontists call for braces is to fix misaligned jaws. Overbites or underbites are jaw misalignments that can create overcrowding, wear and tear on your teeth, and ultimately get in the way of proper brushing and flossing. In most cases, if these areas of concern aren’t addressed early, this can lead to future bridges, crowns, implants, or other cosmetic services.

Braces may not seem like a lot of fun for your teen, but this kind of treatment can help treat a myriad of oral issues that can save you a fortune in the long run!

How to Know If You or Your Child Will Need Braces

Generally, your orthodontist will be the first to point out that your child may need braces; this can happen between the ages of 10 and 14. Although, everyone’s mouths are different. Your child may require braces earlier or later in life. A good indicator that braces are on the horizon for your youngster:

  • An overbite or an underbite, or jaws that don’t meet at all
  • Teeth that are too crowded together
  • Teeth that are spaced too far apart
  • A history of baby teeth falling out too early, too late, or irregularly
  • Difficulty biting and chewing, or biting the cheek or roof of the mouth
  • Jaws that click, shift, or make sounds

girl choosing between braces or invisalignAlternative Options

Although traditional braces are common for younger teens, there are modern alternatives that may be suitable for your child. Invisalign® is a safe, cost-effective treatment that consists of clear aligners that are molded to the shape of your teen’s teeth. These nearly invisible retainers are removable and show be taken out to eat and practice oral hygiene.

Although Invisalign® is a discrete option, we usually do not recommend this alternative for young children because the removable feature requires self-discipline. Older teens however, tend to gravitate towards this method for appearance and flexibility.

Getting Started with Braces or Invisalign 

Is your child ready for braces? Meet with our orthodontist to receive a free consultation or contact us to book your appointment!