Modern orthodontics has made it easier than ever to straighten your smile, with over 4 million Americans in braces. Yet many people are still on the fence about this particular method of treatment, especially patients who are more image-conscious. If you need to break the news to your child that they need braces, you may be a little worried about how they’ll react. We’re here to help any parent whose child is afraid of braces!
At Lincoln Orthodontics, we know what a big change and adjustment orthodontic treatment can be. It’s normal to feel anxious about treatment, especially if you’re not sure how the process works or what the next several months will look like. However, we want this process to be as relaxed and stress-free as possible for both you and your child.
Orthodontics doesn’t have to be scary! By walking you through any fears your child has about treatment, we can tackle the source of their apprehension directly. This can help them look forward to braces with excitement rather than dread! Let’s take a look at some of the worries often associated with orthodontic treatment, and learn how we can help your child feel more confident in their orthodontic journey.
Will braces hurt?
One of the biggest fears most kids have when it comes to braces is that treatment will be painful. The good news is: today’s braces are better than ever and only use gentle pressure to gradually straighten the teeth over time. Not only are they more comfortable and customizable than ever before, there are also different options available, depending on a child’s specific needs. From metal to clear to hidden braces, there’s something for every smile.
All that said, braces treatment isn’t entirely without discomfort. While the pressure we use to move your child’s teeth is gentle. Their gums or mouth may still feel slightly tender from time to time, usually right after the braces are put on, or following an adjustment appointment. However, any soreness should be minor and temporary and it usually lasts no more than a day or two. In most cases, it can be easily treated with nothing more than over-the-counter pain relievers or numbing ointments.
What is the treatment process like?
Going into the treatment process when you don’t know much about orthodontics or how braces work can be scary. No one likes being in a situation you don’t have any control over! Our team has worked hard to make our office as friendly and welcoming as possible, but it can still be intimidating for patients who have never received treatment before.
We never take it for granted that you’ve trusted your child’s smile with us. It’s important to us that you and your child both feel comfortable and supported during every aspect of the treatment process! Our team will be sure to talk you through each step so you’ll know exactly what to expect at all times. We’ll also make sure you have plenty of time to discuss any questions or concerns you have Dr. Willett. It’s our goal to set you and your child completely at ease before we ever put the first bracket on!
Will braces make a patient stand out?
While most of us can be sensitive about our appearance, children and teens are especially affected by anything they feel might set them apart from their peers. But as we mentioned briefly, orthodontic treatment has been consistently gaining popularity in recent years. That means your child is far from likely to be the only one in class or school wearing braces!
If you do find your child is feeling anxious about possible changes to their appearance, there are several things you can do to reassure them that treatment won’t last forever, (even if it sometimes feels like it!) Remind them of anyone your family knows who has been or is currently in braces, or if you ever wore them yourself, pull out all those old photos or yearbooks and show them! Kids are also influenced by culture, so pull up a list of celebrities who wore braces once upon a time. Many kids will feel more confident about wearing braces if they know that someone they admire needed a little help straightening their smile, too.
You can always encourage your child to embrace their orthodontic journey with a little flair! Colored bands come in many colors, so your child can coordinate them with friends, outfits, holidays, favorite color combinations, even team or school colors. This is a really easy way to add some fun and personality into the treatment process. We also offer appliances that are designed to be more “invisible” and can help you make the right decision for you and your family if that is a concern.
How long will orthodontic treatment actually take?
There’s no getting around the fact that successful orthodontic treatment does take some time. Every patient responds to treatment in their own unique way, so treatment time will vary from case to case. That means there’s no “one size fits all” answer for how long your child will need to be in braces, but we’ll always give you an estimate before we put them on. While the average treatment time for braces with all permanent teeth to be around 18 months, keep in mind that your child’s specific needs will determine how long they’ll be in treatment.
We know that just about any amount of time in braces can seem like an eternity to a child, but we promise that it really will fly by once they get used to their appliance! In no time at all, braces will just be another part of their daily routine. Just keep reminding them that every moment they spend in braces will be worth it for the end result…a beautiful smile they’ll get to enjoy forever.
Get the best in braces treatment with Lincoln Orthodontics
Here at Lincoln Orthodontics, we take pride in working with the parent and our patients to give the whole family a positive orthodontic experience. If you’re in Lincoln and have a child in need of orthodontic treatment, we would love the chance to meet you and discuss your options! Get in touch with us today to schedule a FREE consultation, and take the first step towards a smile your child will thank you for.