August 15th, 2022
Orthodontist in Queens
When first finding out they'll be getting braces; your kid likely will have many questions. Some might be excited and see orthodontics as a rite of passage. In contrast, others may be nervous or even embarrassed to have a mouthful of metal. They also might not be too keen that they'll have to avoid certain beloved foods during treatment.
Each question is valid; we get it from teens and their parents in our practice. What we have found in most cases is that kids are afraid of the unknown. At Robert W. Bruno, DDS, your orthodontist in Queens, we recommend parents ease nerves and help their children understand what to expect. By preparing emotionally for braces, you'll be surprised that some kids can even get excited about their future with orthodontics.
#1 Learn About Braces Together
Let's be honest; getting braces can feel overwhelming for everyone. The first step to preparing for orthodontics is to learn everything you can before treatment starts.
Learn about the changes that will be made, from the foods to avoid to the activities they might have to sit out. Learn how to brush and floss to prevent tooth decay. After thorough research and a clear discussion of what is expected, you will all feel more equipped for a life with braces.
#2 Let Them Know They're Not Alone
Not many people are thrilled about getting braces because they think they'll be the only person going through it. But chances are they already have several friends or classmates with braces. An estimated 80% of teens will have some orthodontic care.
Reminding your kids that they are not the first person to get braces can help them get more comfortable with the idea. If you wore braces as a teen, share your experience with them and how it improved your oral health and confidence. Tell them about all the celebrities and athletes who had braces.
For example, Christiano Ronaldo, Venus Williams, Beyonce, Justin Bieber, and even Tom Cruise, amongst many others. Once your kid sees how standard they are in adolescence, they'll feel better about wearing braces and get excited about a beautiful smile.
#3 Plan Ahead for Discomfort
There is discomfort with orthodontic treatment as the teeth shift and move to their desired position. Traditional metal braces can cause additional irritation to the inside of the mouth. Have mild pain killers and even some Oral Gel on hand when the teeth and jaws get sore.
If the brackets are poking into your cheeks and causing sores, place orthodontic wax over that part of the braces to reduce irritation. Being proactive about managing discomfort will ensure a positive experience.
#4 Stock up on Soft Foods
There is a list of banned foods when you have braces, including sticky, chewy, hard, or crunchy foods. Anything that has to be bitten into, like apples, or corn on the cob, is a bad idea. Make lives easier by stocking up on softer foods like yogurt, soups, smoothies, steamed veggies, or ice cream.
#5 Keep your eye on the Prize
Depending on the treatment plan, they'll have to wait many months for a straight smile. To keep them motivated, help them look ahead to the end of treatment when they see their perfect healthy smile. Focusing on the outcome will encourage them to stay on track and comply with their orthodontist's instructions.
Visit Robert W. Bruno, DDS | Dentist in Queens
Do you have crooked teeth and are interested in learning more about braces? If you live around Queens, New York, give Robert W. Bruno, DDS, a call. We provide teens and adults with all types of braces, Invisalign treatment, and Invisalign Teen.