The teen years are a critical time to fix orthodontic problems because it is easier and more effective to treat these issues during this time. At Topsmiles Pediatric Dentistry and Orthodontics, we’re prepared to get your teenager on track and prepped for a lifetime of bright smiles. Let’s dive in and look into why teens should get orthodontic treatment!
Why Teens Have The Edge In Orthodontic Care
The teenage years are a crucial period for addressing orthodontic concerns as it is often the most effective time to guide the development of the teeth and jaws. During adolescence, the jaws are still growing, which means that orthodontists can more easily manipulate the teeth and jaw alignment to correct the bite and address any teeth alignment issues. This makes the treatment process less complex, less invasive, and more comfortable for the teen.
Additionally, orthodontic treatment is quite common among teenagers, making it a shared experience among peers. This social aspect can make the process feel less daunting for teens, as they can share experiences, encourage each other, and realize that braces are a standard part of adolescence. Ultimately, addressing orthodontic issues during the teenage years can prevent more severe issues in the future, saving time, money, and discomfort in the long run.
The Usual Suspects Of Teen Orthodontic Issues
Teenagers often face a variety of orthodontic problems that, if left untreated, can lead to more severe issues in adulthood.
- Overcrowding: When there is not enough space in the jaw for all the teeth to fit comfortably and naturally. This can lead to crooked teeth and difficulty in cleaning, which increases the risk of tooth decay and gum disease.
- Overbite: Where the upper front teeth overlap the lower front teeth excessively. This can lead to wear and tear on the teeth and jaw pain.
- Protrusions: Where the upper or lower teeth extend too far forward, this can lead to an increased risk of tooth damage and can affect a teen’s self-esteem.
- Gaps between teeth: This can also affect self-esteem and can lead to gum problems if the teeth do not properly support the gums. Addressing these common orthodontic problems during the teenage years can lead to better oral health and increased self-confidence in the long run.
The Health Benefits of Orthodontics
Orthodontic treatment during the teenage years comes with a variety of benefits that go beyond just aesthetics. While the most obvious benefit is the creation of a beautiful, confident smile, having properly aligned teeth can actually improve a teen’s overall physical and mental well-being.
Improved Oral Health
Straight teeth are easier to clean and may reduce the risk of tooth decay and gum disease if oral hygiene is not done properly. Overcrowded or overly spaced-out teeth can grind and rub against each other, wearing down the enamel and leaving the teeth vulnerable to bacteria, plaque, and tartar. Properly aligned teeth also protect against physical damage or trauma.
Improved Physical Health
Properly aligned teeth can improve speech, chewing, breathing, and sleeping. Jaw pain can come from abnormal tension or pressure on the jaw due to the placement of the jaw or misaligned teeth (crossbite). If left untreated, this may develop into TMD, which is a multifactorial disorder. Teens with narrow upper maxillary arches can have an increased risk of breathing correctly and can suffer from mouth breathing or sleeping disorders.
A smile that a teen is proud to show off can do wonders for their self-esteem. This can be particularly impactful during the teenage years when self-image is often a big focus and sometimes associated with self-worth. Orthodontic treatment can help teens feel more confident in their appearance, positively impacting their social life, school performance, and overall happiness.
Ultimately, the health benefits of orthodontic treatment for teens go beyond just the physical. A beautiful, confident smile can have a positive impact on a teen’s mental health, self-esteem, and overall quality of life.
Crafting Smiles for Teens
Thankfully, there are now more orthodontic treatment options and different kinds of braces for teenagers than ever before. Your Topsmiles orthodontist will help you determine the right choice for your child based on your goals, needs, and lifestyle.
- Metal Braces have long been one of the most effective treatments for most orthodontic problems. They consist of metal brackets, wires, and ligatures to move the teeth into the desired position.
- Ceramic Braces are almost identical to traditional braces, but instead of shiny metal brackets, they use brackets made of tooth-colored ceramic to blend in with the teeth. These are great for older teens who prefer a low-key look.
- Clear Aligners are a great option for teens who want an even more low-key look than ceramic braces. These are virtually invisible, removable, and custom-made for the teen’s teeth, giving them freedom and ultra-personalized appliances.
Each treatment option has pros and cons, and which is best for your teen depends on their needs, goals, and lifestyle. Your Topsmiles orthodontist will consult with you to help you determine the best option for your teen.
Smiling Bright With Topsmiles Pediatric Dentistry And Orthodontics
From preventing problems with teeth and gums to boosting self-confidence and mental health, there are so many good reasons to get orthodontic treatment as a teenager. So, if you are a parent thinking about orthodontic treatment for your teen or a teenager who’s ready for a glowing smile, don’t wait. Schedule your free consultation with Topsmiles Pediatric Dentistry and Orthodontics and start the journey towards a healthier, happier smile.