How To Support Your Child When They Get Braces

Posted on: 22 August 2022

Getting braces can be a difficult transition for children, particularly tweens and teens who can feel a little self-conscious at the best of times. Some kids are happy to have dental problems addressed, while others are reluctant even though they understand the benefits that braces can bring. If your child is struggling with the idea of wearing braces your support can go a long way. A little encouragement and meeting them where they are with their feelings about braces can ensure they stick with their recommended treatment program and follow the care instructions they have been given to help prevent any mishaps during their brace-wearing years. Here are some ways you can support your child.

Do Some Research Together

If your child has just been told they need braces, they may have all sorts of images and ideas in their head. Braces have come a long way over the years and are really quite discreet nowadays. Sit down with your child and research the different types of braces that are available and what's involved in being fitted for braces. Read about the potential consequences of not getting braces when they are needed and how their oral health could be impacted by braces. Your child may have questions they want to ask your dentist once you've done a bit of research at home, so it may be beneficial to book a consultation before arranging a brace-fitting appointment.

Encourage Self-Expression

Once you know what type of braces your child needs, find out how you can personalise them and encourage your child to design braces they love. Some braces use brackets that are adjusted at regular intervals to encourage the straightening of the teeth. The brackets come in a variety of shapes, such as hearts, footballs and flowers, and they have rubber bands attached to them to cushion the smile. These bands come in all different colours, so your child can have some control over how their braces will look. If they prefer to be discreet, they can opt for transparent bands, but some kids love to pick a variety of bright colours or simply their favourite colour.

Be A Good Example

Once your child has their braces, it's quite normal for there to be an adjustment period and they may initially feel they don't like having them. It's understandable that your child may feel frustrated at having to avoid some foods they enjoy and having to take care when cleaning their teeth, but you can help them adjust by setting a good example with your own oral health. Let your child see you brushing and flossing regularly and keep a good stock of floss and mouthwash that's suitable for those with braces.

Getting braces can feel like a huge life change for kids, but with support from you and a dentist who's willing to discuss their concerns and answer their questions, your child can adjust and embrace the positive impact braces will have on their oral health. For more information on braces, contact a dentist near you.