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How to Help Your Child Adjust to Having Braces

Last updated 4 years ago

Talk to your child’s pediatric dentist about orthodontic screenings. Children should have a screening by the time they are seven years old. Correcting orthodontic problems as early as possible can minimize treatment time. Some children might express worry about having braces, but there are a number of things you can do to help your child adjust to wearing orthodontics. When your child first receives braces, talk to his or her pediatric dentist about the best ways to promote optimal oral hygiene and comfort.

Minimize Discomfort
When the braces are first fitted to your child’s mouth, he or she may feel some discomfort and soreness for about three days. The same discomfort can occur when the braces are tightened or adjusted. Remind your child that it’s temporary and that his or her mouth will soon feel much better. Advances in modern dentistry, including more flexible wires, further minimize discomfort. However, an over-the-counter pain reliever can also help. Feed your child soft foods while he or she adjusts to the braces.

Protect the Soft Tissues
Occasionally, your child might experience irritation of the soft tissues, including the gums, tongue, and insides of the cheeks. An oral numbing gel will help minimize any irritation. Dryness of the lips can also occur, which can be alleviated with lip balm. Sometimes, a wire or bracket may become loose. Place a small amount of soft wax around the broken piece to protect the surrounding tissues, and bring your child to the dentist as soon as possible.

Foster Self-Esteem
Some children may worry about how braces affect their appearance. Remind your child that many of his or her peers will likely be getting braces as well. Your child might also be comforted by knowing that his or her smile will be greatly improved by the braces. Additionally, talk to your child’s dentist about Invisalign’s “invisible” braces for teens.

Adelberg Montalvan Pediatric Dentistry in Long Island offers Invisalign, traditional metal braces, retainers, and more. Contact us today for an appointment by calling (516) 798-1111. Or, visit our website to learn more about our pediatric dentistry and orthodontic services.

 

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