Braces for Kids
Being a parent is an expensive business these days. The thought of paying for your kids to have brace treatment may seem like an unnecessary cost, especially as the NHS will fund treatment. Why pay for it if you can get it for free?
The awareness of orthodontic treatment has grown tremendously. Access to this service has become easier across the UK (with a few exceptions where patients may have to travel a bigger distance to get to them). The biggest issue for patients seeking NHS orthodontic treatment nowadays is higher demand and restricted resources. Contracts for delivering treatment are limited and have no growth potential so if the number of patients needing treatment increases they are more likely to have to wait to be seen.
Are braces worth it for kids?
Braces are worth it for kids who require orthodontic treatment. As children grow and develop, it is crucial to address any orthodontic issues to ensure proper alignment and a healthy smile in the long run. Here are just some of the reasons braces are worth it for kids:
Correcting orthodontic issues early
Braces can effectively address common orthodontic problems such as crowding, spacing, misalignment and bite issues in children. By treating these issues at an early age, we can guide the growth and development of their teeth and jaws, preventing more complex problems in the future.
Promoting oral health
Straight teeth are easier to clean and maintain. By aligning the teeth with braces, children can establish good oral hygiene habits and reduce the risk of tooth decay, gum disease and other dental problems.
Boosting confidence and self-esteem
Orthodontic treatment with braces can significantly enhance a child’s smile and overall appearance. A straighter smile can boost self-esteem, improve confidence and positively impact social interactions.
Is it worth waiting for my child’s orthodontic treatment?
Waiting for treatment is not a bad thing. After all, most orthodontic treatment is cosmetic. However, studies show that orthodontic correction of teeth boosts a patient’s social and mental well-being, with a positive impact on confidence. For the growing teenager, waiting for treatment to correct their prominent or wonky teeth may seem like a really big deal.
The vast majority of adolescent patients will be more than happy with metal braces, but others may benefit from more aesthetically-pleasing options. Adolescents that are budding actors or musicians may prefer options like Invisalign Teen. These treatments are not available to the NHS patient.
Busy NHS practices are often patient-rich and time-poor. This can translate to longer intervals between appointments. So an 18-month treatment may be stretched out to 2 years or more. Like many busy hospital departments, practices may double book slots and that inevitably leaves patients waiting to be seen on the day.
Many of you will know that schools are getting stricter on missing lessons, even for dental and medical treatment. Parents are busy themselves and have to take time out of their schedule to transport their children to and from appointments.
So, is paying for your child’s braces worth it?
For some, the answer is a definite yes. Having access to more convenient appointments, a greater range of treatment and no waiting time to start braces will definitely be high on the wish list for them.
If that’s not important to you or your child, and they qualify for NHS treatment, then going down the NHS route is perfectly acceptable too. However, if you find yourself unhappy down the line with the NHS offering, you may find it difficult to change direction once they have their brace in place. Consider all your options before you choose.
The important thing is to know you have a choice for your child’s orthodontic treatment.
If you’d like to learn more about braces for kids, or at what age a child can start orthodontic treatment, please get in touch today. Call our experienced team now on 0118 467 9469.