How to prepare your child for braces
If you stop to think about it, taking your child or teen to the orthodontist for their first appointment is the first step on a journey to perfectly straight teeth, a bright, attractive smile and self-confidence that may lead to a full, satisfying, social and work life that lasts a lifetime. That’s quite some gift a parent can give their child. Our orthodontic treatment options for children at Park Lane Orthodontics in Reading, Berkshire, can correct tooth misalignment, but the process requires your child to actively clean the metal wires and attachments throughout the treatment process. For some parents, constant reminders to brush after eating or to avoid certain foods can become tiresome.
At your first orthodontic consultation, our orthodontic specialists in Reading, a team of experienced children’s orthodontists, will describe the steps needed to maintain and clean the braces. If you’re thinking about the right children’s braces and how nest top prepare your teen for orthodontics, these helpful tips will ensure your child is ready when it comes to maintaining his or her new braces.
Top tips for kids braces
Experience tells us it’s really helpful to discuss the intricacies of fitting metal braces on young teeth before your child undergoes treatment at our orthodontic clinic in Reading. Emphasizing how strong but also delicate braces are can instil a sense of responsibility in your child. After all, not every family can afford orthodontic treatment so encouraging a sense of gratitude and excitement can help ensure your child has a positive attitude before, during, and after they get that wonderful new smile. One of the great joys of being an orthodontist is seeing the utter delight in a young person when they see their new smile in the mirror on the day their braces are removed.
In some cases your child may be anxious prior to having braces fitted and often kids have lots of questions for our team so it’s useful to get them to come in with a list of written questions before the first orthodontic appointment. It’s also fun and useful for parents to sit down with their teen and draft a list of questions so everyone feels invested in the process, nothing is missed or forgotten and, in the end, we get the best treatment outcomes, so everyone is happy.
Typical frequently asked questions about braces include:
What do braces feel like?
Do metal braces hurt?
How long will I have to have braces on?
What food can I eat with braces on?
How do I clean my teeth with braces on?
Do you offer Invisalign for teens?
You can buy interdental brushes, electric toothbrushes, and other oral hygiene supplies before your child has metal braces fitted. Children often get excited when there’s a special project to buy supplies for so make sure they choose their preferred colour and brands. Encouraging a sense of ownership over good oral hygiene habits will not only help when it comes to complying with instructions for good brace-care, it’s also an invaluable lesson to learn for a lifetime of good dental hygiene habits.
What parents can do to help
Remind children of consequences: If your child chews on objects or engages in other habits that lead to snapping wires or loosened brackets, a gentle reminder that braces may need to be worn for a longer period of time can often work wonders. Kids are always in a hurry to get their braces off!
Teach responsibility: For teenagers and older children with pocket money or a source of income it sometimes helps to tie costs into lost or damaged attachments and retainers. Some parents have told us the responsibility of sharing costs had a big impact in addressing recurring issues of lost retainers and broken brackets.
How about a to-do list: Parents have reported success by buying a small dry erase board and setting it on the mirror in their kids bathroom. Children have to tick off a small box each time he or she completes a thorough brushing and cleaning.
Remind your child about check-ups: The team at Park Lane Orthodontics will ask your child if they’ve been carefully cleaning their new braces. Let your child know a week in advance that the check-up and questions about oral hygiene habits are only days away.
Making sure your child’s teeth stay clean can prevent decay and cavities while ensuring their smile is selfie-ready the day the braces come off.
A beautiful smile to last a lifetime is one of the great gifts a parent can give their child. So if you’re ready, why not contact us today. We’re here to help.