The summer break is just a few weeks away! School will be out and days are longer and which means more time for outdoor activities such as swimming, playing, or just being lazy. There are also fewer commitments such as after-school activities like sporting events. Because of this, summer is an opportune time to have your child or teenager evaluated for braces.
The American Association of Orthodontics recommends that all children have an orthodontic exam by age 7 to see if there are any problems developing with the jaw that may need early intervention. Most of the baby teeth are still in place and an orthodontic specialist can easily determine if there is anything that needs early attention. If early treatment is necessary, it can ease the time and expense of braces treatment later on. Generally, the best time for most kids to get braces is between the ages of 11 and 14. However, those ages aren’t set in stone. Really, anyone can get braces at any age!
Benefits of Getting Braces in the Summer
Obviously, fewer time commitments mean more scheduling flexibility in the summertime especially since the first few appointments can take a little longer.
The free initial consultation includes x-rays and discussing which braces treatment option is right for your child. We will also discuss insurance and/or financing options, along with any preparations that may need to be done prior to applying braces on the teeth.
The second appointment will involve placing the appliances on the teeth.
Orthodontic technology has come a long way, but there will still be a minor adjustment as your child’s mouth gets used to braces. The teeth may be a little sore in the beginning. Ibuprofen helps a lot but it’s a good idea to have soft foods on hand. Things like rice, pasta, and soup are all excellent choices while the mouth adapts to braces. Chilled foods such as ice cream or popsicles can be soothing as well.
There may be some mild irritation to the inside of the mouth, in the beginning, however it usually resolves within a week or two. This is caused by the hardware rubbing or chafing against the mouth or lips. Fortunately, orthodontic wax can solve this problem immediately.
Changes to Eating Habits
Your child/teen will need to change the way they eat some foods and it’s better for them to figure these things out before going back to school. Things like apples, carrots, hard bread, crackers, etc., should be cut up before eating rather than biting into them since taking a bite out of these types of foods can cause breakage of the braces on the front teeth. Corn that’s on the cob should be sliced off as well.
Other types of foods should be avoided altogether so no breakage occurs:
- Hard candies
There will also need to be some adjustments to dental hygiene once braces are applied. We will show you and your child the most effective way to brush and floss in order to avoid plaque build-up during braces treatment.
Young people are incredibly resilient to change, but it will be easier for them to establish new habits when they are home for the summer. This way, once they go back to school, it will all be second nature to them!
After school starts back up again, your child will only need to come in for short office visits when braces need to be adjusted and to check progress. These appointments are quick and won’t take much time away from school or extra-curricular activities!
Dr. Taylor and the staff at A Perfect Smile Orthodontics offer all patients a complimentary consultation that includes a complete exam with x-rays along with providing you with options regarding the types of braces that we offer, and all financing options. Give us a call at (956) 433-3579 or fill out the form below to schedule your free consultation!