Dealing with Kids, Tweens, Teens and Braces

Your tween’s dentist has brought it up again and it’s time to make that appointment with the orthodontist. Your tween needs braces, no fun. They are costly, they hurt and getting your child to comply with much of the rules and regulations that the orthodontist will ask of them is close to impossible. Even the good kids who follow every other rule in on your family’s list of dos and don’ts will do something they shouldn’t and break them at least once, more likely twice in the time they will have them on. But, they are well worth the effort and are appreciated after they are gone.

General Tips on Kids an Braces

For most kids, the best time for braces is generally between ages 10 and 14, when a child’s mouth and head are still growing and the permanent teeth are erupting. but if your teen is in need of braces and they are older, that is fine too.

If your child is young and their dentist recommends you see an orthodontist early, there may be a good reason. For some kids, a two phase braces treatment works well, one at a younger age and then again when they are a bit older.

Tips on Keeping the Cost of Braces Down

Braces are costly. They are often consider to be for non-medical reasons and are not always covered by insurances. But, times are changing and some insurances are picking them up, at least in part. So, be sure to check with your medical insurance policy as well as your dental for orthodontist procedures.

You will be offer by the business office of your orthodontist the ability to pay for the work all in one lump sum. Basically, you pay the amount up front and whatever happens with the braces, it is covered in the fee you have already paid. This is a good way to go if you have the money to pay the lump sum.

If you do not have the money to pay the lump sum, you can set up a payment schedule. It will go on for a two year span, as that is the normal length of time braces are on. Sometimes though, braces may be on longer than that.

Tips on Going to Appointments

Since your tween or teen will be taking care of their braces on a monthly basis for years, strive to make their appoints early in the morning or right after school. If your orthodontist has evening hours, try to get into those. The less your child’s braces interferes with their school work, the better. Although, you should be prepared for some interference.

If you do not trust your tween or teen to give you all of the information that they receive, go back with them. Otherwise, ask before you leave if you have any questions.

It is a good idea to allow your child to take some pain medication before going to have their braces rewired or tightened. This can be painful otherwise.

Chap stick before appointments is important as their lips can get chapped because of all the work going on in their mouth. Keep one in your glove compartment so you always have it for appointments.

Regular appointments do not normally take long, you’ll be in the office maybe 15 to 20 minutes as orthodontists normally run a tight ship. That is why it is important to be on time and remember your teen’s scheduled appointments.

At Home Care of Your Teen’s Braces

Your teenager needs to be aware of the ‘do not eat’ food list. While it may seem like a pain to not eat some of the foods that they enjoy, the list is there to protect the braces from breaking. Encourage them to follow it.

Encourage you teen to keep their teeth clean, but don’t use whitening toothpaste. Whitening toothpaste may make their teeth look stained when they get the braces off, so regular toothpaste is recommended.

Prepare a kit for your child to carry to school with a toothbrush, toothpaste, wax and chap stick to use as needed.

If the braces should break and they are poking your teen in the mouth, cover with wax or some wet cotton and make an appointment as soon as possible to get it fixed. If it is not causing any discomfort, call the orthodontist and ask their opinion as to when you should come in.

Do you have any tips to add to our article? Please feel free to share in the comments section and we may add it to this piece 😉

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