Do any of the kids in your home need braces? Braces for children is a common time for braces to become a necessity and your own children may be at risk for needing braces as well. It's a good thing to have your kids get braces when the need arises because it's a great way to straighten their teeth, improve their oral health, and give them confidence in their overall smile and appearance.
Braces for children don't have to be on for a very long time, but can be on for up to a few years or so depending on the severity of the condition or how well a child's teeth respond to braces. If your family needs braces for kids, here are signs you should call their dentist for a referral to an orthodontist.
Your kids have crooked teeth that aren't straightening out
It's hard to tell if your kids need braces right away until almost all their permanent teeth are in, but early on you should be able to see if their teeth are crooked. As front teeth come in, they may overlap, be one above the other, twist to the side, or just be crooked in another way. This can create both discomfort and an unappealing growth pattern for any remaining teeth. Once your child has their teeth in and their permanent teeth are fully placed, they may be eligible for a referral for braces for children.
Your kids have crooked teeth in the family
Did you or your spouse have braces as kids? Did anyone else in your families have or need braces when they were younger? The need for braces is hereditary, so while not all of your kids will need children's braces, there is a good chance they will if either you or your significant other — biological parents — have needed them.
The only way to know for sure is to have your kids have X-rays done of their teeth. An X-ray will show the placement of your children's teeth and help a dentist see areas where your children may struggle with dental issues in the future.
Your kids have little or no gaps between teeth
If your kids have very few or no gaps between their teeth, then they may be at risk for needing kids' braces soon. The gaps in your children's teeth will help give them tons of room for their adult teeth to come in. If they lack these gaps, then they may not have much room left for adult teeth, leaving a greater likelihood of needing braces for children.
To learn more, contact a children's dentist in your area such as Eugene C. Brown, Jr., DDS, MS.