How Do You Know If Your Child Needs Braces?

About four million children in the U.S. wear braces, and the likelihood of children needing braces as their permanent teeth grow is relatively high. However, not all kids will have to have braces even though many parents assume their child will need them. Here is a look at a few general signs your child may eventually need braces.

Your child was a thumbsucker or used a pacifier for several years.

Thumbsucking and pacifiers are natural comforts for babies, but if your child uses these comfort measures beyond the age when their baby teeth have grown in, there can be a higher likelihood that they will eventually need braces. The continued pressure against the teeth can cause them to grow in at an outward slant.

Your child lost their baby teeth later in life than most children.

Children who lose their baby teeth a little later than most ca be more likely to need braces as well. The baby teeth can alter the growth path of the permanent tooth if it stays in place too long. Most children will start losing their baby teeth around the age of six years old. While the exact timing can vary depending on the child’s physiological development, prolonged tooth loss can cause future issues.

Your child’s teeth do not “meet” when they close their mouth.

If your child already has all of their permanent teeth in place, take a look at how their bite aligns when they close their mouth. If there is a slight under or overbite, the child may not necessarily have to get braces. However, if the difference in bite is pretty drastic, your child may need braces to correct the issue.

Your child has unevenly spaced teeth with gaps between or crowding.

One of the more obvious and definitive signs a child needs braces is if there are spaces and gaps between teeth or issues with crowding. Gaps can develop due to irregularities in the growth paths of permanent teeth. Crowding may occur due to genetics or due to slow or delayed loss of baby teeth.

Talk to a BellBrook Dentist About Braces 

Learning that your child needs braces can be a little intimidating, but the process is so routine and so carefully honed that most children do just fine with the process. If you believe your child needs braces, reach out to us at Bellbrook Family Dental to schedule an appointment.

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