Thinking about your child’s smile? It’s hard not to when you’re a parent. After all, there’s nothing quite like seeing your children smile, laugh, and enjoy themselves throughout the day.
As children grow up, it’s important to always have their health in mind. Nutritious meals and regular exercise keep our kids active and physically fit. Periodic visits to the doctor and dentist also help children stay healthy and curb the development of various health issues.
In addition to these child development staples, early-age orthodontic care is a great way to boost your child’s health and set the foundation for healthy adulthood. Although we sometimes equate braces with adolescence, the truth is that orthodontic work is more effective with an early start—beginning at around age 7.
At Beverly Hills Orthodontics, we proudly provide children’s braces across Los Angeles. With locations in Beverly Hills/Century City, Toluca Lake, Alhambra, and Downtown Los Angeles, BHO is dedicated to providing child patients with comfortable, effective orthodontic treatment that delivers lifelong benefits.
Here’s how braces can improve your child’s health:
The Benefits of Early Orthodontic Work
Starting at age 7, the American Academy of Orthodontics recommends that children attend their first orthodontic appointment. While this may seem a bit early to some parents, early-age appointments will make treatment much easier for your child.
Around age 7, your child’s permanent teeth are beginning to erupt. At the same time, their face and jaw bones are still growing. These developments provide a great opportunity for orthodontists to diagnose developing problems and create a treatment plan before they have the chance to worsen.
While tooth roots are strong, they aren’t supposed to keep teeth from shifting around in your mouth. Teeth need some space to move in order to chew food. Surrounding each tooth is a collection of fibers called the periodontal ligament that absorbs pressure and disperses it around the jaw. Thanks to the periodontal ligament, we are able to eat foods without breaking our teeth.
At Beverly Hills Orthodontics, we use these first appointments to perform a full evaluation of your child’s facial/dental features. By examining your child’s jaw, bite, facial growth patterns, and erupting permanent teeth, we are able to uncover alignment problems at an early stage and begin planning orthodontic work.
We may also use these appointments to prescribe interceptive orthodontic treatment measures such as:
- Poor oral habit control
- Strategic tooth extraction
- Palate expansion
- Muscle exercises
With these steps complete, your child will have a great foundation for future orthodontic work, and we will be able to discuss which treatment approach will work best: braces or Invisalign.
Children’s Braces vs. Invisalign
In recent years, Invisalign has become increasingly popular for patients of all ages. When Invisalign first became available to the public, eligibility was largely limited to adult patients with mild problems. Over time, however, aligner and software advancements have greatly expanded Invisalign treatment possibilities.
Today, orthodontists can use Invisalign to treat children as young as 10 and even correct severe problems using hybrid treatment methods. However, just because your child qualifies for Invisalign treatment, doesn’t mean Invisalign is right for your child.
Invisalign has a number of advantages, including:
- A completely discreet look
- Dietary freedom during treatment
- Unaltered brushing and flossing
- Fewer orthodontic appointments as compared to braces
These benefits often convince adults to choose Invisalign over braces during treatment planning. Children, on the other hand, are often better suited for braces. Why? It largely revolves around personal responsibility.
Even the most responsible kids are prone to losing things. While losing a toy might not be a problem, losing a pair of Invisalign aligners can cause a lot of issues, including:
- The need to order replacement aligners
- The cost associated with buying a replacement
- Delays in treatment due to the lost aligner
Beyond the high chance of lost aligners, children also tend to struggle with wearing their aligners for the required 22 hours a day. Invisalign aligners can be removed at any moment of the day, tempting kids to remove their aligners for excessive amounts of time.
Orthodontists recommend that patients only remove aligners when eating, brushing, flossing, and exercising. If patients neglect their aligners, it can significantly hinder treatment. Children in particular are susceptible to this problem.
By choosing traditional braces, parents can eliminate the risks associated with Invisalign and provide their children with stable results. For a quick glance at the differences between braces and Invisalign, see the pros vs. cons chart below.
|Children’s Braces||Children’s Invisalign|
Searching for Children’s Braces in Los Angeles? Call one of BHO’s Four LA Locations Today
When you’re a parent, the most important thing in your life is keeping your children happy and healthy. Childhood orthodontic treatment provides your little ones with lifelong health benefits and the heightened confidence that a perfectly-aligned smile can bring. By undergoing orthodontic work at an early age, your children will also experience quicker, easier treatment than if they waited until adulthood to address their alignment issues.
At Beverly Hills Orthodontics, our team of experts has been improving the smiles of children since 2008. As parents ourselves, we understand the concerns of both you and your child. That’s why we use every measure to make braces treatment as comfortable and convenient as possible for all of our patients—from children to teenagers to adults. If your child’s ready to begin their orthodontic journey, call one of BHO’s four Los Angeles offices to schedule an appointment.