What Age Should You Get Braces: Is There A Perfect Starting Time?
What age do you have to be to get braces? And if you are determined to get your teeth straight well into your adulthood, what are the precautions? Many parents decide for their kids to get braces as soon as they have lost all their baby teeth and fully developed permanent teeth. However, that does not mean you cannot get your braces at 30, 35 or even older. Orthodontists have long been saying that there is no age boundary to the experience, though there are cautions you should take.
At what age should you get braces?
It is widely believed that the best age to start considering braces is between 10 and 14 (after all, you are most likely to spot braces on pre-teen and teenagers than on an adult or a younger child). That is because, at this age, the person has all or nearly all of their adult teeth in place. Their softer jawbone tissue is also more receptive to correction.
However, the American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) recommends that the first trip to an orthodontic specialist should happen no later than age 7- when most kids have lost all their baby teeth and their permanent teeth start coming in. An early access to orthodontic care also means that should your child have any jaw problems or basic bite misalignments; they will be spotted a lot sooner. Early orthodontic care can save you money in the long run and more importantly- can shorten your child’s treatment time. Early orthodontic care usually consists of fixing spaces between the teeth and tackling alignment issues. This process paves the way for the next step- wearing full braces- to be done more effectively.
If you are still uncertain about the specific age at which to take your child to the orthodontists, you might find it helpful to look out for the following signs that might indicate your kid needs braces treatment:
- Irregular loss of baby teeth, either it happens too early or too late
- Overbite or underbite
- Protruding teeth
- Mouth breathing
- Misplaces, crooked or crowded teeth
- Difficulty in biting or chewing
- Speech impediment
Conclusively, when it comes to the question: at what age can you get braces? The answer is sooner is better. Early intervention not only results in faster treatment time as a whole but also allows for a more effective experience as the mouth and head of the child or the teenager are still developing. Besides, it is recommended to get orthodontic treatment earlier rather than later as your child or teenager can sooner enjoy a future of social confidence. It is particularly relevant in this era of social media and camera phones, where having a beautiful smile with perfectly aligned teeth can go a long way in improving a young person’s self-esteem and social confidence.
What is a good age for braces, and am I too old?
Does that mean at 30, I am too old for braces? Not at all. Plenty of adults have improved their smiles, too, by starting wearing braces well into their adulthood. According to the American Association of Orthodontists, there is a high number of 18-year-old and older patients who get their braces fitted every day. Age is hardly the limit to this treatment because there are only 2 essential requirements: a healthy jawbone and permanent, healthy teeth.
That said, there are certain requirements as well as various options of braces that older patients should be aware of for their treatment to be as effective and comfortable as possible.
Strong teeth and healthy jaws
If you are an adult and thinking about getting your braces fitted, make sure you have a healthy set of teeth and strong, healthy jawbones. This requirement should be met to avoid jaw issues, gum disease and tooth decay.
Extra treatments are possible
Adults seeking orthodontic treatment can be subjected to more dental treatments than just fitting in the braces. Depends on how well you take care of your oral hygiene, you may need treatment for gum disease, a filling, root canal or other dental treatments in preparation for braces. Sometimes, structural changes are required, too, as adult teeth have reached a point in which they are a lot more difficult to be repositioned, especially with severe misalignments. In some cases, orthodontic treatment may also require oral surgery.
Complicated as these precautions might sound, they do not at all hinder the success of adults’ orthodontic treatment. The success rate among adult teeth using braces is just as high as that of teenager’s teeth. Much of that success is down to the fact that adults are generally more compliant to the orthodontists’ and dentists’ instructions for oral hygiene.
Nevertheless, it is helpful to keep in mind that adults tend to have a more socially broad lifestyle and professional relationships compared to teenagers. This might make some feel reluctant about wearing metal braces for a few months or even years. Fortunately, if you are unsure about which option there are beside bulky metal braces, there are several alternatives which, over the year, have proven both effective and popular among braces-wearers. Among them are Clear Braces and Invisalign. These orthodontic options, especially the transparent braces Invisalign, offer a much more discreet treatment and comparable results to metal braces.
All this information should tell you that there is no age limit to the question of what age to get braces, as long as you have healthy jaw and strong permanent teeth. Having said that, to the question, what age are braces recommended? The answer is, if you are thinking of getting your child to a dentist or orthodontist, you probably want to schedule the appointment sooner rather than later. Early access to orthodontic care can prepare your child for a shorter and more effective treatment. If you are seeking the treatment as an adult, the advice is to take good care of your dental health- and that practice should continue after you get your braces. All in all, if you manage to practice good oral hygiene, you should be a perfect candidate for braces in most cases.