Brace Yourself: A Parent’s Guide to Braces

So your child needs braces?  With the right preparation and tips, you can help make the process smooth sailing for your child.

Schedule an Orthodontic Evaluation Early On

According to the American Association of Orthodontists, it’s recommended that your child has a check-up with an orthodontist by the age of 7. Though children don’t usually start wearing braces until their pre-teen years, seeing a specialist early on can help you and your child get a sense of what type of orthodontic treatment may be needed.

Preparing for Braces

If your child needs braces, it’s important to understand the treatment plan and what will be covered under your dental plan.  Not all dental plans cover orthodontia, so it’s important to review your benefits beforehand.

The treatment plan will explain what type of braces are needed, what your child can expect during the procedure, the maintenance and care required for the braces and a general timeline. Understanding the treatment plan and reviewing it with your child can help prevent any surprises that might overwhelm them. Before they get their braces, be sure to go shopping with your child for any dental care items that will be needed to clean and take care of them, such as a special type of flosser.

Helping Your Child Adjust

The first few weeks with braces may be uncomfortable. Your child may struggle eating the foods they’re used to. Prior to the procedure, it’s helpful to stock your kitchen with soft foods that your child will enjoy. It may also be challenging for them to adjust to the appearance of braces, but there are more options that may be available to help your child “customize their braces.” Of course,  it’s good to remind them that braces will help them have a bright and healthy smile.

Caring for Braces

Helping your child take proper care of their braces will not only help them have a more comfortable experience, but it will also teach them responsibility and the importance of good oral hygiene and care. Try creating a schedule that will make it easy for your child to remember what needs to be done and when. Additionally, keep in mind the foods that should be avoided and remind your child from time-to-time. Doing so, can help prevent stress and discomfort for them.

Keeping these tips in mind and offering your support will help them feel more comfortable and look forward to their new and improved smile.

TruAssure-Image_4775acc9-c2a5-4f3a-a687-b60535235380VBA dental plans are administered and underwritten by TruAssure and are offered in association with the DenteMax Plus dental network arrangement, which includes participating dentists from the United Concordia, DenteMax and Connection dental networks in all states but North Carolina, where the DenteMax Plus network arrangement includes DenteMax and Connection dental networks.

The information contained above is intended to be educational in nature, does not constitute medical advice, and should not be relied on as a substitute for actual professional medical advice, care or treatment. If you have any vision, dental or other health related concerns, VBA encourages you to immediately contact your optometrist/ophthalmologist, dentist/orthodontist or any other competent, licensed, medical professional.