Young girl looking scared sitting in a dentist chair while a woman holds her hand in the background.

Helping Your Kid Adjust to Braces

Posted on January 21, 2021

Young girl looking scared sitting in a dentist chair while a woman holds her hand in the background.

Getting braces is a big deal. If your children’s dentist has recommended seeing an orthodontist for braces, there are things you can do to help your child transition to wearing braces.

The American Association of Orthodontists recommends that children see an orthodontist as soon as a problem is discovered. Typically it is recommended that a child sees an orthodontist by the age of seven. If your child has a need for braces following a few tips can help them adjust to wearing braces.

Tip Number One: Ask Questions

You are your child’s advocate. It is important that you feel confident when your child is getting braces. Building confidence starts with talking to your children’s orthodontist and gathering as much information as you can. Understanding what to expect for your child will help you to navigate the process with them. It’s important that you serve as a source of reassurance.

The more informed you are the better you can help your child to wear braces successfully. Don’t be afraid to ask questions about care and treatment.

Tip Number Two: Become a Good Listener

Your child will likely feel apprehensive about getting braces. They might have a lot of questions and need some reassurance. Listen intently to their concerns and do your best to address them. Helping your child adjust to wearing braces may mean just listening and being able to provide answers to their questions.

Tip Number Three: Follow The Orthodontist’s Diet Recommendations

One of the easiest ways to avoid problems with braces is to follow the orthodontist’s diet advice. For example, keeping sticky treats out of the house will ensure that there is no temptation for your child. Preparing meals that are easy for your child to eat will help them cope with any discomfort from the braces, too.

Tip Number Four: Make Sure They Have the Right Tools

Children often need a little extra help to care for their teeth when they have braces. The right tools can make a world of difference. A water tooth flosser, like Waterpik, can make it easier to clean between their teeth. You may also want to consider supervising oral hygiene for the first few weeks your child is wearing braces. This will ensure their teeth are properly cared for until they get used to the additional steps they need to take.

Tip Number Five: Address any Discomfort

While there is no real pain involved with wearing braces, there likely will be some discomfort. Address the discomfort with ice pops, ice cream, and over-the-counter pain medication. If your child continues to complain about the discomfort, make an appointment to see the orthodontist for a quick exam to see if there is anything else going on.

You and your child will get through this together. At the end of the road, your child will have a straight smile and healthy teeth that will make their life better.

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