What’s the best age to get braces?

Is it better to get braces as a child, or should you wait until your teens to get your teeth looked at? And what about if you’re an adult – is it too late? 

Firstly, the good news is that it’s never too late to get your teeth seen to. Many people associate braces with the train tracks of childhood, but these days, lots of adults are seeking expert advice about correcting their teeth, many of whom probably thought they’d never be able to do anything about their overbite or crowding. And often, with better financial security, adults have more flexibility about the type of fixture they want – and are more likely to wear their appliance correctly. 

The ideal time

In a perfect world, the best age to have braces fitted is around the age of 12-13, while the child’s mouth and jaw are still growing. They need to be old enough to be able to look after their teeth properly, as they’ll need to keep both their teeth and brace really clean to prevent tooth decay. Most dentists require a child to have lost all of their baby teeth before an appliance is considered. 

Orthodontic treatment at this age often means that treatment is quicker and more effective than in adulthood, and may help avoid other interventions later in life, too.  

Braces for adults

However, braces aren’t just for kids and teens – there are lots that can be done to perfect your smile at any age. It might be that you’ve always been meaning to get something done but just not got round to it, or that you wanted to wait until you could afford the best possible treatment. 

Many teens and young adults opt for Invisalign, as these clear, plastic aligners are barely noticeable. Others love our clear braces, which use discreet, tooth-coloured brackets to help blend into your teeth. Depending on the treatment you need, correction may take a little bit longer than in children, but it’s still really effective. There’s no upper age limit as to the people we can treat. 

Once your brace is removed, you’ll need to wear a retainer for some time to help keep your teeth in the correct position, whatever your age. But trust us – it’ll be worth it!

What braces can and can’t do

Having a brace can do much more than improve your teeth and smile. It can also make subtle adjustments to your face and jaw, making it more symmetrical and bringing out the best in your features. Here’s a rundown of some things that braces can – and can't do.  Will a...

What’s the best age to get braces?

Is it better to get braces as a child, or should you wait until your teens to get your teeth looked at? And what about if you're an adult – is it too late?  Firstly, the good news is that it's never too late to get your teeth seen to. Many people associate braces...

How do braces really work?

So you’ve decided to have your teeth corrected, and you’re looking forward to getting the right brace or aligner for you – but what actually happens once your brace is fitted, and how does it work?  The general principle is that braces apply gentle pressure to...

Can my child get braces on the NHS?

Children under the age of 18 are entitled to free dental treatment under the NHS, which includes regular check-ups, advice on caring for teeth, fluoride varnish to help prevent decay and repairs such as fillings.  Some children also qualify for NHS orthodontic...

Do braces hurt, and how can you ease the pain?

It’s a bit of a worry, and probably playing on your mind if you’re thinking of getting braces for you or your child – but do braces actually hurt? And how long might they feel uncomfortable for?  A lot of people find a trip to the dentist stressful, but it...

What can you eat with a brace – and what should you avoid?

Getting a brace means you’re well on your way to the smile you’ve always wanted. But first, there are some ground rules that you need to follow when eating and drinking to make sure you get the best possible results. Some foods and snacks can get stuck in your brace...

Which braces work the fastest – traditional or Invisalign?

Everyone wants everything in super-quick time these days – so why not straight teeth? Well, getting your best smile takes time and patience, but it will be worth it in the end, trust us. So, is there any way you can speed up the time it takes to straighten your teeth...

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