When should your high schooler wear braces?

orthodontic treatment in high school

Children can begin wearing braces once they have lost their baby (primary) teeth and a majority of the permanent teeth have grown in. This can range anywhere from ages 8 to 14. Not everyone starts that early, though, and there’s certainly nothing wrong with undergoing orthodontic treatment in high school. If you have a high-school-aged child who needs braces, Dr. John McDonald provides a wide range of orthodontic treatments for teenagers — including Invisalign clear, removable aligners.

Benefits of Undergoing Orthodontic Treatments in High School

By high school, most kids are self-conscious about their smiles. Some teenagers bemoan having to wear braces, but your kid will certainly not be the only one in his or her class with braces.

Dr. John can begin orthodontic treatments for your high schooler, whether he or she is in 9th, 10th, 11th, or 12th grade. If at all possible, we recommend that your children’s treatment be completed before they head off to college. That way, Dr. John can oversee every step of the process, from initial Invisalign or metal braces placement to the final photo-ready results.

Many of our parents find that there are advantages to undergoing orthodontic treatment while in high school. A few of these include:

Parental Oversight

In theory, teenagers are supposed to be fairly self-sufficient. The reality is that teenagers still benefit from the guidance of their parents. Throughout the treatment process, parents are encouraged to attend visits and learn about life with braces alongside their kids. Even bright teenagers may have difficulty understanding the finer points of orthodontic treatment. The other reason parents are important is that teens usually need reminders about what not to eat, when to brush and floss, and what time and day their check-in visits are scheduled.

Insurance Coverage

Teenagers have an important advantage over adults in at least one health-related area: They are likely covered under their parents’ dental insurance. While dental insurance may not cover all of the expenses related to orthodontic treatment, there are usually financial benefits.

Plenty of High Schoolers Will Also Be Undergoing Orthodontic Treatments

Most adults who have braces wish they had undergone the treatment when they were younger. The fact is, no one is surprised to see a child who has wires and brackets on their teeth. If your teenager complains about “embarrassing” braces, remind them that high school is the normal and expected life stage where people undergo orthodontic treatments.

What Are My Child’s Treatment Options?

The first step toward delivering a more attractive smile for your child is to set up a consultation with Dr. John. Depending on your child’s dental needs and cosmetic goals, Dr. John may recommend traditional metal braces, non-brace treatments, Invisalign, and more. Salem Invisalign even offers a product, Invisalign Teen, just for kids 13 and older. These clear aligners have a special colored button that alerts parents when the 22-hour compliance rule is not being met. Extra aligners are included, as well, because kids lose things — even their Invisalign trays!

Schedule Your High Schooler’s Braces Consultation Today

By beginning your child’s orthodontic treatment while he or she is a freshman, treatment should be completed by the summer before senior year, when senior pictures are taken. Give your child the gift of a beautiful smile by calling (503) 585-5400, and take advantage of our free consultation.