Is Invisalign for kids a good idea, and when is the earliest age that children can get Invisalign?
Not everyone is born with perfectly straight teeth. That’s why with kids, it is best to work on their teeth as soon as you can because dental treatments for adults can get very expensive.
Braces are considered to be like a rite of passage for kids these days. It signals that they will be teenagers soon. And when they reach high school, they can face the new chapter confidently with a straight, new smile.
Before, to get straight teeth, you will require traditional braces. Today, metallic braces are not the only way to achieve this. Clear braces are now the more favored option because they are nicer to look at and they are easier to handle.
So, it may not be a surprise if kids prefer Invisalign instead of traditional metal braces. But can kids have Invisalign and will it be worth it?
In this article, we will discuss the important things you need to know as a parent who is considering getting Invisalign for your kid. This way, you will be able to make a smart decision when it comes to what treatment would be best for your kid.
What is Invisalign
First of all, you have to understand how the Invisalign treatment works. Invisalign makes use of clear aligners that go over the teeth like a retainer. The material is transparent so it is hardly visible – which is a great improvement compared to metal braces.
Invisalign clear aligners apply gentle pressure on your child’s teeth to move around. Every one or two weeks, your Invisalign provider will give you a new tray of aligners for your child. Each set will be tighter than the last one to ensure the gradual tooth movement.
The entire treatment process usually takes 9 to 15 months, depending on the severity of the dental issue. The more complex the issue is, the longer the treatment will be.
Office visits will be required when getting the next set of aligners and for the Invisalign provider to personally check on your child’s teeth and see how the treatment is progressing. But it will be fewer office visits compared to office visits with braces.
At what age can a child get Invisalign?
Every child has a different case so there is no standard age that Invisalign declares for kids. The timing of treatment would ultimately depend on your orthodontist.
But to give you a general idea, the American Association of Orthodontists do recommend that children get their first orthodontic exam when they turn 7. This is the right age for an orthodontist to evaluate the growth and development of the jaws, face, and the position of the permanent teeth (erupted or not). With this initial exam, an orthodontic can identify any issues and suggest orthodontic treatment to prevent problems in the future.
Even when it comes to traditional braces, 7 years old is the soonest that they can get.
Is Invisalign a good option for kids?
Invisalign clear aligners are a good option but this will also depend on how your child behaves and how responsible your child is. After all, it would take an amount of maturity to fully understand how the whole treatment works.
Since Invisalign aligners have to be worn at least 22 hours each day, your child should be responsible enough to keep it on and only take it out when they are eating.
Some kids often take off their aligners when their parents are not around because they find them uncomfortable. This could delay their treatment, which would mean additional expense for you.
Your child should also be responsible enough to take good care of their clear aligners. When they take off their aligners to eat, they should place them in a container, and then clean their teeth before putting them back on.
If you have heard of children always losing their retainers during their lunch period – it can be the same case for Invisalign aligners. And because of their transparent material, they can be more difficult to spot if lost.
If you think your child is not ready for this level of responsibility and discipline yet, then perhaps traditional metal braces are better for your child. Since metal braces are fixed to their teeth, you do not have to worry about them losing them.
Or, you can think about getting Invisalign later on when they hit their teenage years. This way, they will be mature and responsible enough to deal with the Invisalign teen process.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Does Invisalign have an age limit?
There is no age limit when it comes to getting Invisalign. There are patients in their 60s that are still able to get the treatment. This renowned orthodontic treatment can correct a wide variety of dental issues at any age.
Is Invisalign better than traditional metal braces?
Invisalign is just as effective as regular braces as long as it is used properly. It can treat common orthodontic issues like crooked teeth, teeth gaps, underbites, and overbites.
The average length of treatment is almost the same as traditional braces. The cost is about the same as well. Insurance coverage will treat them as one under orthodontics.
Do I need to make dietary changes with Invisalign?
We are sure you have heard about dietary restrictions that comes with braces and metal wires.
The good thing about Invisalign is that it is removable. Your child is supposed to take it off every time he or she eats and drinks something.
Because of this, you do not have to worry about Invisalign affecting your child’s diet! This is one great advantage of Invisalign for kids since a lot of children are picky eaters.
With Invisalign, they can eat whatever they want. They just need to remember to remove their aligners then brush their teeth clean and clean the aligners before putting them back on after they eat.
What happens if my child loses their aligners?
If your child loses their clear aligner, you can simply set up an emergency appointment with your Invisalign provider. The orthodontist will check if your child needs a replacement or if they can move on to the next aligner a bit earlier than expected.
If a replacement is needed, they may advise you to let your child wear their last aligner on the set while waiting for the replacement. This is why it is a good idea that you do not throw out the aligners right away.
A great smile can make a good, lasting impression. This can build up the confidence and self-esteem of your child. Good oral hygiene is very important and smiles Invisalign can fix dental problems for your child and improve your child’s life.
Although your child looks perfectly fine just the way they are, it is a reality that having bad teeth can make them prone to bullying. Plus, they will have to carry that dental condition until adulthood.
Teeth straightening not just about looks. It can also greatly affect your child’s quality of life – they can cause pain, bad oral hygiene, and they may have difficulty chewing or speaking.
To make sure that they grow up without dental issues, getting Invisalign treatment is a great step. This treatment can help deal with gaps, crooked teeth, and bite issues. You can get this treatment at any age and your kids can definitely have it too.