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!