Braces not only give your child the smile he or she deserves, but they give your child the boost of confidence they need. When children suffer from misplaced teeth, it holds them back from being themselves. This is especially true when they’re self-conscious about their teeth.
They may not smile as much as they once used to or engage in conversations like they would before becoming aware of their misplaced teeth. Luckily, there is a solution for them, and that’s braces. But, as you’re probably well aware of, with the many amazing benefits of braces comes a challenge all of its own.
Because wearing braces is sometimes challenging for children, it’s important to know some essential tips to give kids getting braces. Continue reading below to learn more!
1. Talk to Your Child About What to Expect
It’s always important to talk to your child about what he or she can expect from getting braces before he or she gets them. Even if your child is very young, it’s still a good idea to address this with him or her. Knowing what to expect in any situation makes the process easier and puts anxiety at ease.
The procedure is pretty straightforward so explaining it to your child won’t be too difficult. Small brackets are glued onto their teeth and then a wire is placed in them to connect each bracket to one another. Once this step is completed, he or she can choose the color of their liking to have on the braces.
There is also the option to not have a color at all, which some might choose as a way to draw less attention to them. It’s okay to let them know that having braces fitted isn’t very painful, and it’s more uncomfortable than anything. Also, let them know that you’ll bring them back multiple times to have the wires adjusted as their teeth straighten.
2. Listen to What Their Concerns Are
To fully help your child prepare for their braces and adjust to having them is to listen to what their concerns are. Let them be open and honest with you. This way, you can try to find solutions to their concerns and work towards making them feel better about it.
If they’re worried about others making fun of them, then it’s a good idea to let them know that braces are a very common thing and many of their friends at school either has or will have them. You should also remind them of why they’re getting braces in the first place. Braces are not a permanent thing.
They’re a temporary thing that causes a permanent fix to their teeth.
3. Stock the Cabinets With Soft Foods
The first couple of days after having braces put on are always the hardest. Your child might experience some discomfort, and it’s a good idea to have soft foods ready in your cabinets. Because of this, your child might not want to chew too hard.
Prepare for this by stocking up your cabinets with soft foods like pasta, mashed potatoes, rice, ice cream, yogurt, soup, and more. Foods that are kept cool in the refrigerator also work well to soothe sore mouths.
4. Purchase Orthodontic Wax Ahead of Time
Orthodontic wax is also known as dental wax or braces wax. It’s used when braces cause sores on the inside of the mouth. It’ll help your child’s braces feel more comfortable.
Wherever the problem bracket is in his or her mouth that’s causing the irritation, take some of the wax and ball it up in your fingers and then place it on the trouble bracket. This will stop the bracket from rubbing on your child’s gums, cheeks, and tongue. Be sure to give your child some to take with them to school and anywhere else that they go.
Having their own supply means they can place the wax on their brackets themselves if one starts causing irritation, sores, or discomfort.
5. Prepare to Help With Discomfort
You’ll need to prepare yourself to help with your child’s discomfort in any way possible. Do know that braces can be very uncomfortable in the early stages. If your child expresses their discomfort to you, then try your best to make them feel more comfortable.
For example, offer them a cold bowl of ice cream to help numb their gums, or pain medicine if needed. If the discomfort doesn’t seem to get any better, then there’s always the option of bringing them back into the office to ensure that there’s nothing wrong with the braces.
6. Prepare them for a Change in Diet
One of the hardest things that your child might experience from getting braces is the change in diet that they must follow. There will be a list of certain things to follow while having the braces on. On this list is a list of foods that your child won’t be able to eat while wearing their braces.
These foods include things like popcorn, caramel, and more. There are also some food items that they’ll still be able to eat but will have to cut into small pieces before doing so.
7. Remind them of All the Benefits
When everything is said and done, if your child is going through a rough time with their braces, remind them of all of the benefits that they’ll get once the process is done. Remember to remind them that braces are temporary and not permanent. It’s worth it in the end to have a straight white smile!
Kids Getting Braces Don’t Have to be Scared
If you have kids getting braces in your family, remember that it doesn’t need to be a scary time for them. Keep these 7 tips in mind before they’re fitted for their braces and your children will remain as stress-free as possible.
Ready to have your children’s braces placed on? Book your free orthodontic exam today to see how we can help you!