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5 Things Every Parent Should Know About Orthodontics

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young girl with braces taking a selfie

Parenthood is complicated. In order to raise a happy and healthy child, you have to stay on top of their diet, sleep schedule, schoolwork, social circle…the list goes on. Another important item on this list is oral health, which for children often involves orthodontics. There are a lot of misconceptions about this type of treatment, but your children’s orthodontist in Westerville is here to bust 5 common myths.

Myth 1: “Straightening the Baby Teeth is Pointless”

The American Association of Orthodontists recommends that every child should receive an orthodontic evaluation around age 8, which is usually a time when a child has a combination of baby and adult teeth. Many parents delay starting their child with braces at this stage because they figure it’s wise to wait until all of the adult teeth come in, and then move them.

Unfortunately, this approach can lead to more severe issues for the child, as misaligned baby teeth lead to crooked adult teeth. Correcting crowding in the baby teeth allows the adult teeth to come in as straight as possible, meaning a child will likely require less treatment overall.

Myth 2: “Orthodontic Care is Extremely Expensive”

While orthodontic care certainly isn’t cheap, it is much, much more affordable compared to when you were growing up. And now, thanks to dental insurance and 0% financing offered by some practices, more and more parents are pleasantly surprised by how affordable braces are these days.

Myth 3: “If I Take My Child to An Orthodontist, They Will Always Recommend Treatment”

Some parents are afraid that if they visit an orthodontist, they will automatically suggest that their child get braces. This is not the case. An orthodontist will not recommend moving a child’s teeth unless it is absolutely necessary, and they may even suggest non-orthodontic options to address issues like crowding (such as removing a few baby teeth early so the adult teeth have room to erupt correctly).

Myth 4: “It’s All About Looks”

The benefits of childhood orthodontic care definitely include a beautiful smile, but this is just the tip of the iceberg. When used early, braces can enable a child to eat and speak more comfortably as well as avoid more advanced issues down the road. In some cases, orthodontics can even be used to widen the airway, helping with issues like snoring and sleep apnea.

Myth 5: “I Can Just Get Braces from a Dentist”

Many general dentists offer braces, but parents should always bring their child to a board-certified orthodontist for this kind of treatment. That’s because orthodontists have years of additional education and training moving the teeth, meaning they can provide more precise and comfortable care for your child. Working with an expert can make the entire orthodontic process much smoother, easier, and efficient.

Hopefully, this knowledge has put some concerns to rest if you believe your child might need braces. Early-age orthodontic care can achieve some truly amazing things these days, all without parents having to sacrifice their budget or peace of mind!

About the Author

Dr. Jeffrey Shirck is a board-certified orthodontist in 43082 who loves taking care of patients of all ages. If your child needs braces, then he would love to talk to you and your little one. He has years of experience working with growing smiles, and as a father of 3, knows a thing or two about keeping kids calm. To learn more about your child’s options and get answers to questions, contact Shirck Orthodontics to schedule a FREE consultation.