With summer in full swing, we’ve all been kicking back, relaxing, and enjoying these long days and later mornings. You probably haven’t been thinking about your child’s teeth while planning your next BBQ or laying out by the pool, but this is actually the perfect time of year to explore how orthodontics can benefit your their smile! This is especially true for children who haven’t yet had an orthodontic evaluation.
Did you know that the American Association of Orthodontists recommends all children have an initial evaluation with an orthodontist by around the age of 7? If you have a young child ready for their first visit with us here at David Ross Orthodontics, we’d love to meet them and see how their teeth and jaws are developing! But what if your child has already had an evaluation and been diagnosed with an oral issue? Let’s take a look at why summer is one of the best times to introduce orthodontic treatment!
Summer schedules tend to be more relaxed
Families are busier than ever before these days, and the school year can feel especially stressful between work, school, and extracurriculars. You may find yourself feeling run off your feet by the time you get to Friday!
When a child is undergoing orthodontic treatment, regular check-ups are an important part of the process. During these appointments, Dr. Ross will check to make sure everything is progressing the way it should be, and make any adjustments needed. With a more relaxed schedule in the summer, it can be a lot easier to find time to get into this new routine.
We cover quite a bit of ground during a child’s first visit, including:
- a review of your child’s dental and medical history
- a thorough oral exam that include x-rays
- any diagnosis will include a discussion of treatment options and what to expect during the orthodontic process
- a personalized treatment plan for your child
- scheduling an appointment to begin the treatment process
- a conversation covering financial and insurance options
- answering any questions or concerns you may have
When you schedule lengthier appointment like this during summer vacation, you won’t have to worry about it cutting into your child’s school day or your work day. The same holds true for appointments where we will be placing braces on your child’s teeth, or having them try on their first set of clear aligners.
Kids can tackle learning curves from the comfort of home
We can thank modern techniques and technology for making current orthodontic treatments more comfortable, effective, and discreet than ever before. However, any kind of orthodontic appliance will still come with a learning curve. Braces in particular can take a bit of getting used to!
In the early days of treatment, or after adjustment appointments, braces patients may have some slight soreness or discomfort in the mouth and jaw. There are also a number of food restrictions kids will need to get used to. These have the potential to be a real distraction at school, but aren’t much more than a minor annoyance at home, where your child has more control over their environment. Beginning orthodontic treatment in the summer keeps it easier for your child to avoid any lunchtime temptation, and helps them stick to the softer, simpler foods that will be gentle on their mouth and braces.
Even patients using Invisalign to straighten their smiles will still need some time to adapt. The clear aligner system works by wearing a series of removable aligners over the teeth for 20-22 hours every day throughout the course of treatment. Aligners also need to be switched out with the next in the series every 1-2 weeks in order to keep up with the movement of the teeth. It might sound simple, but this method of treatment relies on the patient’s compliance, and the system will only work if the aligners are worn exactly as directed. Not wearing aligners or switching them out on time can result in extra treatment time and affect the overall effectiveness of the treatment.
Since summer vacation frees your child from the demands of early alarms, homework, and other assorted projects, it’s an excellent opportunity for students of all ages to get used to the ins and outs of their particular orthodontic treatment.
Extra time equals extra care
The school year comes with early mornings and hectic days that have us ready to fall straight into our beds some nights without so much as a glance at our toothbrush. Taking good care of our teeth and gums is important, orthodontic patient or not, but a solid oral hygiene routine is even more essential for anyone in braces or aligners. Orthodontic appliances can do the hard work of straightening your child’s teeth, but they can’t keep their mouths healthy and clean.
Invisalign’s aligners are removed prior to brushing and flossing, which is easy enough, but braces require a little extra effort to really get in between all the wires and brackets. You may want to work with your child and experiment until they find a routine that works best for them. This is a lot easier to do when you don’t have to set an early alarm or enforce a bedtime before the sun is all the way down!
Summer break gives your child plenty of extra hours to figure out the best way to brush and floss effectively. This will help keep their mouth happy, their smile bright, and their treatment progress on the right track.
David Ross Orthodontics will give you a reason to smile this summer
The long, lazy days of summer make it a fantastic time to take advantage of all the benefits orthodontics has to offer! Is your child ready for an orthodontic evaluation or orthodontic treatment in Hanover or the surrounding communities? Our talented team is here to help you both get started by scheduling a FREE exam for your child to meet with Dr. Ross. We work together to help every patient we see have a rewarding and stress-free orthodontic experience, from start to finish. Call today and take the first steps toward a healthy, beautiful smile that will last your child a lifetime!