Braces play a very important role as far as helping teeth grow in the right direction. If teeth grow at odd angles, it can be quite painful and extremely difficult to speak and chew. Not to mention one’s confidence isn’t at its highest with un-straightened teeth. Braces slowly straighten out the teeth and move them over time, so they’re not pushing or grinding against each other. When your child’s teeth begin to develop negatively, you know braces could help them, but you might not know where to start. That’s what we’d like to discuss.

Every person is going to be different, so there isn’t necessarily a go-to age to get braces. When asking yourself if it’s the right time for braces, you will need to know the status of the teeth in your offspring’s mouth and there are two types of teeth that dentists will want to look for:

  • 12-Year Molars: AKA second molars; these permanent teeth usually erupt between ages 11 and 13. These teeth really must be present before putting in braces.
  • Primary Teeth: AKA “baby teeth”. Though braces can be established when primary teeth are still present, this can lead to longer treatment times because the adult teeth still need to come in. It’s best to wait until all the primary teeth have dropped.

Remember there is no age limit for braces. When your children have developed their 12-year molars and have lost all their primary teeth, they’re usually around the ages of 12 and 13. Once you’re able to consult with an orthodontist, you’ll know if this is the appropriate age for your child to get braces. Braces aren’t only for children and teenagers. If you’re a grown adult and your family couldn’t afford to get you braces as a child — or didn’t know you needed them, or you did get braces but didn’t follow up with your retainers — you can still get braces as an adult and get the incredible smile you deserve.