How Braces Work to Straighten Your Child’s Teeth?
Whether your child is looking forward to having braces, or more commonly, is terrified of the procedure and worried about how it will all look like, they can be hugely beneficial for them.
The process of straightening the teeth which the braces successfully manage to complete improves the overall oral health of your child. They will be able to maintain oral hygiene much easier since crooked teeth are incredibly difficult to floss, brush, and clean. Also, their speech and digestion could improve, while gum disease will become an easily avoidable inconvenience. Finally, having a wonderful smile will boost your child’s confidence, and we can all agree that that’s one of the most important things in their lives.
However, even if you are well aware that the braces are a useful tool for improving your child’s health, you might be confused about how it all works, worried whether your child is going to be exposed to any pain and how much time they are going to wear the braces. In the next lines, we made sure to provide the explanations you were looking for, so we suggest you stay with us.
The Beginning – Types of Braces
Your orthodontist will recommend the appropriate type based on multiple distinct factors like the child’s age, the exact present dental issue, etc. You are probably familiar with how the classic braces look like – metal brackets that are glued to each tooth connected by a single archwire. This wire is responsible for putting pressure on a child’s teeth and jawline, while the elastic rings connect it to the brackets and expand accordingly. These little elastic pieces come in various colors and patterns and represent one of the few fun things that come with wearing braces.
Even though they contain mostly metallic parts, traditional or classic braces will not cause discomfort since they are much more subtle nowadays as they come with thinner wires and significantly smaller brackets than before.
Clear ceramic braces are quite similar to the metallic ones when it comes to design and straightening procedures yet are more discreet thanks to their built material (ceramic). Still, they are not as durable as the classic ones, so are usually recommended for teens and adults as they require more care.
The inner side of the teeth is referred to as the ‘lingual’ surface by the dental professional, so the lingual braces are placed exactly there. Their biggest advantage is that they are invisible, but they are not recommended if the child has severe malocclusion. Finally, the mildest option is clear aligners which can be taken off and placed again any time throughout the day. However, if your child has severely rotated or crooked teeth, this at-home treatment option will not be the most adequate one.
The Process – How Do the Braces Straighten the Teeth?
We’ve already covered the types of braces and introduced a few essential parts of them, (brackets, archwire, elastic rings, or O-rings), so it’s time to tell you how they all function simultaneously and move the teeth.
The archwire puts the most pressure on your child’s teeth and alights them the correct way, as the brackets and rings support them and keep them intact. It is not unusual that some of the permanent teeth must be extracted since the jaw is unable to accommodate all the teeth once they are put in the correct position. This is also what spares your child from the pain and disturbance.
As the pressure is applied to the lower part of the teeth since this is where the braces are put, how come that the whole jaw gets re-positioned? Underneath the gums, there is a membrane surrounded by the bones which are rooting the teeth to the jaw. This exact membrane is responsible for controlling the position of our teeth and it is good news that it responds to the given pressure and moves the teeth slowly in the new direction.
Still, we are talking about exceptionally slow movements which means that the time necessary to complete the braces’ mission is from one to three years.
Will My Child Experience Any Pain While Having Braces?
When it comes to the pain and discomfort level, it is all bearable and usually only slightly uncomfortable. The installation lasts for about two hours, and it is completely painless.
Still, there will be an adaptation period after the placement of the braces as there are multiple foreign objects in your child’s mouth. Usual things like soreness or throbbing are quite normal, but you can always facilitate the experience with a mild pain-reliever.
Your child’s orthodontist will have to adjust the braces to add the pressure, so it is common for a child to feel some level of discomfort due to the strain.
Hopefully, we managed to clarify some of your doubts and provide much-needed reassurance. In case your child already has braces, we would love to hear some first-hand experience, so feel free to share your impressions in the comment section below!