There are a few misconceptions when it comes to braces and who exactly wears them. While teenagers are the most common patients our orthodontists in Reading and the Lehigh Valley see, they’re far from the only patients! There’s no “ideal” age for braces. Braces can be beneficial at any age. You’re never too young (or too old!) to start looking for ways you can improve your smile and your oral health.

When Should My Child Visit the Orthodontist?

If you’re worried about your child’s smile, our orthodontists recommend bringing them into the office around age 7. While we probably won’t give them braces right away, this is a good way to introduce your child to the idea of braces. Keep in mind that their situation may change after they lose their baby teeth.

If we start early, sometimes we can prevent a more serious dental alignment issue by treating it with minor procedures. For example, palatal expanders are a common “Phase 1” treatment.

What Age Should My Child Get Braces?

The most common age for braces is between 8 and 14, after children have lost their baby teeth. Although their adult teeth are in, their head and mouth are still growing. This makes it easier for braces to do their job and straighten teeth.

It is not lost on us that braces can be a difficult choice for children of this age. They can be uncomfortable at times and make some teens self-conscious. However, technology is rapidly changing, ensuring that braces are more comfortable and faster-working than ever before. Meanwhile, invisible braces and Invisalign aligners are popular options.

What About Braces for Adults?

Adults can also experience the benefit of braces. One in five orthodontic patients is an adult! When teeth are crooked or crowded, properly cleaning them can be hard and decay can set it. Adults can prevent this decay by visiting the orthodontist and opting for braces or Invisalign.

Invisalign is a popular option for adults who would like braces because they can be removed as needed and conveniently fit into an adult’s busy work life and social schedule. Adults should remember that braces may take longer than they would for children. However, this does not mean that the procedure will be less successful.

How Do You Know If You Need Braces?

If you’re a parent of a young child, ask your child’s dentist about their tooth alignment. Signs of overcrowding, overbite, underbite, or protruding teeth can be indicators of needing braces.

If you’re an adult who is experiencing painful eating and dental disease from plaque buildup caused by crooked teeth, it’s not too late to visit an orthodontist to see what adult braces options are available to you. Meanwhile, if you’ve simply been unhappy with your smile and are ready for a change, there’s no right or wrong time to see what an orthodontist would recommend.

At Exeter Smiles, we offer traditional braces for only $3,995. There are no hidden fees and x-rays, retainers, adjustments, and repairs are included. If you’ve been considering braces for your child or even for yourself, schedule a free consultation with our Lehigh Valley and Berks County dentists today.