Securing Your Child’s Smile with Dental Braces
As parents, it’s vital that we look after our children’s teeth and gums. Regularly visiting a kid’s dentist is an integral part of that. Many parents seek braces for children to help correct irregularities in their little one’s teeth and developing jaw. The right dental treatment at the right time means we can improve both the function and appearance of children’s mouths. Whilst brightening up their faces for years to come.
Braces for children are best done at an early age because they help children to eat comfortably and support oral hygiene as the child is growing. While there used to be a stigma surrounding braces, today it is a different story. There are more options available than ever, and many of the children we treat at our practice in Woden, wear their braces proudly.
Why Children’s Braces Are Important
Just as you take your child to visit a dentist regularly from when their first set of teeth have come through. It’s important for them to visit a dentist regularly once their adult teeth start to appear. Around the age of seven is when problems can start occurring with the development of children’s teeth and jaw. The sooner these problems are noticed, the sooner a treatment plan can be put in place to monitor and resolve them. Ultimately, treatment is easier when the jaw bones are still growing as it’s possible to guide their growth.
While your dentist will let you know of any potential problems that they find, there are a few things that you can look out for:
- New adult teeth: Baby teeth tend to fall out between the ages of five and 14. If they fall out too early or too late, there could be complications.
- Thumb sucking: If your child is a thumb sucker past the age of four there is a chance that it will affect their jaw development and teeth.
- Speech defects: anything from lisps and slurring to mouth breathing and snoring can be the result of issues with a child’s developing jaw and teeth.
- Teeth alignment: Teeth can be misaligned in lots of ways. Look out for them not biting together correctly, protruding or being overcrowded at the front of the mouth.
By visiting an orthodontist with your child, you can be confident that all of these issues will be picked up. Then, preventative measures can be put in place at the right time. By looking after our children’s oral development, we can help them to have a healthy mouth into adulthood.
What are Orthodontic Braces?
Orthodontic braces are devices used to apply force onto the teeth, causing movement over time. The aim of braces is to straighten teeth, aligning them to correct a person’s bite as well as improving overall dental health. Braces can be used to fix several issues such as gaps, underbites, overbites, and crooked teeth.
The Orthodontic Options we Offer at our Dental Practice in Woden
Braces are a common treatment to correct the alignment of children’s teeth. There are a number of types of braces options available, which can be explained in detail by your dentist:
- Metal braces: Metal brackets are securely fixed to your child’s teeth and connected with thin metal wires and rubber bands. The wire is slowly tightened over time to achieve the required movement.
- Ceramic braces: tooth-coloured ceramic brackets are used instead of metal brackets and connected with wires and bands.
- Clear braces: These are a series of custom-made, clear plastic aligners, similar to retainers. A digital scan is made of your child’s teeth which is used to custom build the aligners. They can be removed to eat, drink and clean the teeth, but need to be worn for the majority of the day to be effective.
- Lingual braces: these are similar to metal braces, but the brackets and wires are attached on the inside of the teeth.
As your local dentist in Woden, we can review your child’s individual treatment needs as well as their lifestyle choices. This will help you choose the most appropriate option. Metal braces are by far the most common choice of braces. This is because they are less expensive, and can be made more fun by using coloured bands.
Ceramic braces are discreet but more fragile which means they are not always appropriate for young children. Clear braces are almost invisible, very comfortable and, if your child plays a lot of sport, the risk of the braces breaking is reduced. Lingual braces are invisible but aren’t as comfortable and are harder to keep clean. Whichever option you choose for your child, with regular appointments, we can ensure that they keep smiling before, during and after their treatment.
Is Early Orthodontic Treatment Better?
The age that your child will need to have braces will vary according to their individual needs. You will want to book your child’s first orthodontic appointment around the age of seven when their adult teeth are emerging. This is the time that any issues of overcrowding, overbite or crookedness become apparent. This is also the best time to create a plan to resolve the irregularities and put the teeth back in place.
Usually, children won’t have a brace fitted until around the age of 11, but preventative measures are put in place in the meantime. Using sectional braces on a few front teeth can help improve any developing problems, while space maintainers can help avoid overcrowding. By performing interceptive treatment, we shorten the treatment time for full braces. This ensures that your child gets the best possible outcome.
Fitting Children’s Braces – The Process
The process of fitting children’s braces will vary according to the type of brace chosen and the individual treatment plan. In all cases, the process will start with a free consultation with our dentist. A full evaluation will be carried out and the right treatment plan is put together for your child’s specific needs.
Metal braces are the most common choice for children and can take anything from 12 to 36 months to correct misaligned or crowded teeth. The process involves four main stages:
- Fitting the braces: our dentist will clean your children’s teeth before applying the bonding glue to their teeth and attaching the brackets. Once the brackets are secure, the wire will be connected and secured with elastic bands. The procedure takes one to two hours. Your child will be kept comfortable at all times and short breaks will be made available if necessary.
- Ongoing appointments: Your child will need to come back to our dental practice in Woden approximately every four to eight weeks. That’s so we can review progress and make adjustments where required. These appointments are vital to ensure that your child’s teeth are moving as planned.
- Removing the braces: Once your child’s teeth are aligned as per their treatment plan, their braces will be removed. The brackets will be de-banned, and the cement will be taken off to release their brackets. Your child’s teeth will be cleaned, and impressions are taken to make a retainer.
- Ongoing care: Your child will need to wear their retainer regularly over the following years. This will ensure their teeth stay in their new positions.
Why Choose Acacia Dental
With our dental practice established in Woden for over 32 years, it means that we have got to know many of our patients from the local community. The children we fitted braces for in the past, continue to come back to see us for their regular checkups and it’s great to see them come in with their proud new smile. We are a family run dental practice and so we understand the importance of providing an environment that is well suited for families. And because we are a family practice, our dentists remain with us. With corporate-run dental practices, you will tend to find dentists come and go more frequently.
That means that your child will keep the same dentist throughout their child adolescent years. We will get to know you and your children, ensuring we provide the best quality care available. All while making your child feel as comfortable as possible.
How Much Will it Cost?
We all know that having children is expensive and understand the strain that orthodontic treatment can put upon families. However, we also know that you will want the best possible future for your children. The cost of braces for children will vary according to your child’s individual needs. We will talk you through the price and options available at your consultation appointment. Fortunately, we have several payment solutions to help you with the cost of your child’s orthodontic treatment:
- Medicare child benefit scheme: funding of up to $1,000 available to families who receive certain benefits.
- Pensioner and student discounts: up to 15% off as well as bulk billing for routine dental treatment for children under the age of 12.
- Health funds: we accept health funds and are a preferred provider for Medibank Private, HCF and Cbhs.
- Smile.com.au: a subscription-based service giving you reduced dental treatment fees
We accept Certegy Ezi-Pay. This is a flexible, no interest payment plan service that enables you to receive your dental treatment and then pay it back over an agreed timeframe.
If you would like to know more about any of our payment options, then give us a call. We would be happy to talk you through the options and help you find an affordable solution.
Acacia Dental’s Free Orthodontic Consultation
Are your child’s adult teeth starting to emerge? Do their teeth seem overcrowded or are you weighing up your braces for children options? If you are concerned about the alignment of your children’s teeth then a consultation at Acacia Dental will help relieve your worries. Our friendly team will put your child at ease. And our dentist will ensure you receive the best possible advice and treatment.
Call us today on (02) 6281 2222 to book your free orthodontist consultation.