If your child needs braces, he or she may already be attentively watching commercials for orthodontic appliances, such as clear plastic aligners. However, not all orthodontic options are available to kids. Clear plastic aligners are reserved for teens and adults whose pallet has already stop growing. If your child has not reached his or her teen years yet, there are likely other more suitable orthodontic options for him or her. Here are a few of them:
Conventional braces include metal brackets that are applied to the front surface of the teeth, an archwire that can be tightened to force the teeth into proper position and elastic bands to attach the archwire to the brackets. The braces typically straighten the teeth effectively and are suitable for a wide variety of alignment problems.
Nevertheless, conventional metal braces are usually noticeable on the teeth. If your child is a bit shy and uncomfortable about displaying an orthodontic appliance, clear conventional braces may be a better option, since they do not include metal brackets.
Clear conventional braces are fashioned the same way as conventional metal braces. However, the brackets are made of dental ceramic instead of metal. Because the ceramic is white like your child's teeth, it tends to be less noticeable.
Still, clear conventional braces are a bit pricier than traditional metal braces, so if you are concerned about cost, speak to your child's dentist or orthodontist about only applying the ceramic brackets to the teeth that are easily visible. Metal brackets can be applied to the remaining teeth.
Lingual braces are also suitable for children. Although, the brackets of the braces are attached to the back side of the teeth, lingual braces still use an archwire and elastic bands during the straightening process.
Lingual braces can be a preferred option not only for their discretion, but also for their positioning in the mouth. If your child is learning to play a wind instrument, he or she may find it difficult to navigate the lips around brackets that are positioned on the front of the teeth. Due to lingual braces' placement, the mouth can move in its usual manner. Lingual braces may also be a safer option for children who play contact sports that may result in a mouth injury due to a blow from a ball or an opponent.
To learn more about orthodontic options that may be available for your child, schedule an appointment with an orthodontist who specializes in orthodontics for kids.