Children and Braces: Top 5 facts by leading children’s orthodontist Dr Chaw Su Kyi
Disclaimer: This is not a sponsored collaboration. I believe dental health is important for children and wanted to share professional advice on this topic.
When should kids go to the orthodontist?
This is one of the top questions we’re asked! As a general rule, we typically recommend you bring your child to see Dr Kyi at around the age of 9 or 10 when they’ve nearly lost all their baby teeth. She will be able to assess the development of the teeth and check the teeth are erupting well and will then be able to advise as to which treatment options are best for your child.
Do teeth straighten themselves out?
Potentially, the teeth may straighten as the jaw develops but, typically, only in very mild cases. The extent of any natural ‘straightening’ is usually seen at the age of 14-15 years, which is when an assessment can see if any – or which – orthodontic treatment is advised.
Can Invisalign be used on children?
Generally, yes. As long as your child’s teeth are at an appropriate stage, Invisalign can be just as effective and safe for children. However, if your child has a severe overbite or crowding, then fixed braces may be a more efficient option. Each case is assessed individually by Dr Kyi in order to determine the best straightening option given your child’s age, the stage their teeth are at, as well as factors such as whether they play contact sports or a musical instrument.
Will my child remember to wear their Invisalign?
Good question! The key to success is making sure they wear the aligners for the prescribed 20-22 hours a day every single day. In our experience, those children who want Invisalign are generally highly motivated, and we use their review appointments to keep them on track not only in terms of their treatment but also their commitment, which wouldn’t be possible with ‘at-home’ aligners.
Can you play rugby with braces?
With Invisalign, there is no risk of damage to the lips or soft tissues, as there are no metal brackets or wires to dig in or break off. If your child has metal braces, we would recommend that we custom-make a mouth guard for them which fits over the fixed braces to provide the highest level of protection to the teeth and braces.
For further guidance from Dr Chaw-Su Kyi visit www.westlondonorthodontist.co.uk