Braces are the most popular and effective way of aligning and straightening crooked teeth in kids. But they’re also quite costly and somewhat uncomfortable. So, when the dentist recommends braces for your child, it is understandable that you may be reluctant to get them.

If you’re unsure of whether or not to acquire braces for your kid, look out for the following signs:

Chewing Difficulties 

If your child finds it difficult to chew their food, they may indeed be in need of braces as crooked or misaligned teeth tend to cause this problem. You, however, need to schedule a meeting with a kid’s orthodontist to make sure the problem isn’t caused by tooth decay or sensitivity.

Incessant Thumb Sucking

It is quite normal and common for little children to suck their thumb when bored. This should, however, end by the time they’re 8 years old. Beyond that age, thumb sucking indicates some problems with the gums. If done in excess, it can also lead to more serious problems, including teeth misalignment and root damage.

Considering that thumb sucking amongst older kids (8 years and above) is mostly a response to gum discomfort, brace treatment would be a sensible solution. Better teeth alignment from wearing the braces will make chewing more comfortable.

Regularly Biting Cheeks

If you note that your child experiences chewing problems and is often biting their inner cheeks, you should consider getting them some braces. This is because both problems are caused by an excessively large bite and misaligned teeth. Regular bites on the inner cheeks are especially dangerous as they can lead to oral ulcers.

While braces are the best bet to rectify the above problems, some dentists may also recommend a mouth guard to stop the biting.

What Age Is Perfect for Braces?

Generally, braces are regarded as safe and particularly effective for kids between ages 9 and 14. And while kids under the age of 9 may experience problems similar to those highlighted above, it is not recommended to get them on braces.

With that said, it is also worth noting that braces have no set time limit. How long your child wears their braces depends on how severe their misalignment is and the type of brace used (wire, bracket, or rubber band). However, the average length of time for wearing braces is about 2 years.


Looking for an experienced orthodontist in Garden Grove? Contact us today to schedule an appointment!