June 7, 2024

What Is the Ideal Age to Start Orthodontic Treatment?

There is no perfect age to start orthodontic treatment. Everyone has different needs and requirements, so it’s all about catching your orthodontic problems at the right time and addressing them with the programme best suited to your lifestyle.

In general, dentists might start to think about orthodontic treatment for children from the age of around 12 or 13. If the teeth are at risk of emerging in a problematic way, treatment could start even sooner.

In terms of upper age limits, there is no upper age limit. It’s possible to have orthodontic treatment from any age, provided your teeth are in good health. Let’s explore what makes the ideal age for orthodontic treatment in greater detail…

When should children get braces?

Your dentist will start to monitor your child for orthodontic issues when their adult teeth start to emerge. X-ray imaging will allow them to see early signs of overcrowding or teeth that are likely to emerge crooked. Braces can be used not only to straighten the teeth but also to keep space for emerging teeth to help avoid future issues.

Most children will start orthodontic treatment from the age of 12 or 13. Treatment is easier when they are younger as the jaw bone is softer, and this makes it easier to move the teeth into the correct position. They should be able to achieve straight teeth for life, provided they are able to continue wearing a retainer at night time.

When should adults get braces?

Adult orthodontic treatment is becoming much more popular. It’s common for those who had braces as a child to renew their treatment as an adult, particularly if they stopped wearing their retainer and have noticed their teeth moving out of the correct alignment.

You can also start orthodontic treatment as an adult, even if you’ve never had braces before. You’ll have a choice between traditional fixed braces and clear aligners such as Invisalign. Orthodontics can take longer as an adult, as the jawbone is harder which means the teeth need to be gently moved into the optimum position.

Who can’t have braces?

There are a few situations where you might not be a good candidate for braces. If you have widespread gum disease or tooth decay, it would be wise to focus on the health of your teeth and gums before thinking about additional treatment.

If you have veneers, bridges or dental implants, you might also be ruled out for treatment. This is because the restorations won’t respond to orthodontics. If you’re not sure if you’re a suitable candidate, the best option is to speak to your dentist.

Ready to start your orthodontic journey?

If you’re curious about braces, get in touch with our team today. We can advise you on whether you are a good candidate for orthodontic treatment and the best treatment choice for your needs.

If you’re thinking about braces for your child, we can also help to monitor their progression and advise on the best time to start treatment to ensure a streamlined treatment plan.

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