Braces For Teens: An Overview

When most people think about traditional braces, they assume that it is a form of orthodontic treatment reserved primarily for children. However, the reality of the situation is quite different since the types of issues that braces are perfect for correcting can develop at any age.

In fact, many people prefer to wait until they are in their teens so that their jaws continue to develop. However, there are several signs that it may be time for your teen to see an orthodontist for an exam, such as:

  • Crooked or overlapping teeth
  • Large gaps between teeth
  • Missing or crowded teeth
  • Noticeable overbite or underbite
  • Difficulty chewing, biting, and speaking
  • Gaps between the top and bottom teeth while biting

When you do decide to get braces as a teen, we have more than one option of braces available for you to choose from! Our experienced team can help you decide which option is best for you and your specific treatment plan.

  • Traditional metal braces are the ones that most people are probably familiar with. A series of metal brackets are attached to the front side of each tooth and a wire is used to connect those brackets together. The strength of the wire is how the teeth gently move into their desired positions over time.
  • Ceramic braces operate nearly identically to metal braces in function but use a different type of material for the brackets. Because that ceramic material blends in with your natural smile, these are a far more discreet treatment option.
  • Gold braces are a great treatment for patients who require a traditional braces treatment, but prefer the look of gold brackets and wires. This treatment is equally as effective as metal braces; they just have a different appearance!

Life With Braces

If you are the type of teen who likes to maintain a healthy and active lifestyle, the good news is that you have nearly nothing to worry about in terms of braces impacting that lifestyle in any major way.

Having said that, there are certain things you will need to keep in mind to help avoid any unnecessary delays in your treatment:

  • If you are going to be playing sports, keep in mind that you will have to wear a mouthguard during play to protect both your braces and your teeth.
  • Dental hygiene is always important but is especially important while wearing braces. Extra brushing and flossing will be required!
  • There are definitely a few key types of foods that you would do well to avoid. These include ones like popcorn, any hard or sticky candies, chewy foods like soft pretzels or pizza crusts, and any foods that you need to bite into such as apples.