Wearing braces is almost a rite of passage and many pre-teens and teens will require braces to correct problems with their bite. We can provide a range of orthodontic appliances suitable for adolescents and are here to assist your child during every stage of treatment.
What Type of Braces Are Available for Adolescents?
Most braces for adolescents are fixed and can be made from stainless steel, or an alternative is to have ceramic or clear brace brackets that are more discreet and suitable for children who feel particularly self-conscious about braces. Removable aligners might be suitable for specific cases.
Why Choose Fixed Braces?
The reason why we frequently prefer to use fixed braces is that they can often provide more predictable results, and especially when a child has significant crowding, problems with their bite or with the way their teeth are spaced. Fixed braces have brackets that are cemented onto teeth for the duration of treatment and which are powered by wires and elastics which move the teeth. This technology allows for precise tooth movements, moving the teeth in all three dimensions, so the treatment outcome is more favourable, achieving better and more predictable results.
Caring for Fixed Braces
Because fixed braces are cemented onto teeth, they do require a little more care. It is essential to ensure your child cleans around the brackets and wires thoroughly and preferably after each meal. We will teach your child how to clean their braces and there are numerous tools including floss threaders and interdental brushes that ensure this task is straightforward. If your child breaks a wire or if a bracket becomes loose, please contact us immediately so we can arrange for the brace to be professionally repaired. It is also a good idea to ensure sports-mad teens have a custom mouthguard that will fit over fixed braces, protecting their teeth.
Could My Child Have Removable Aligners?
Clear, BPA-free plastic removable aligners are extremely popular amongst adult patients, and it is possible that some older teens might be suitable for this orthodontic system. These aligners are best used when the orthodontic problems are straightforward and easier to correct. Clear aligners are less ideal for more complex orthodontic cases, so if your child has significant bite or alignment problems, they will almost certainly achieve better results with fixed braces. Also, excellent compliance is critical when wearing removable braces. Removable aligners must be worn for at least 22 hours each day, ideally only removed for eating and oral hygiene. Every two weeks, the aligner sets are replaced with a fresh set to continue treatment.
Will My Child Need to Wear Retainers?
Yes, as after treatment is completed, their teeth will need time to settle into their new positions. Without retainers, there is a real risk the teeth will shift back to their original locations. When teeth move, the bone and ligaments around them must remodel, and it takes time for the bone around teeth to rebuild entirely, ensuring teeth are held firmly in place. retainers can be fixed and could be as straightforward as bonding a thin wire to the inner surfaces of teeth, or they can be a removable dental appliance. If your child has aligners, their retainers will look very similar.
Our dental team here at Thompson Road Dental Services will always suggest the treatment we feel will be most beneficial for your child.