Every day, many of the patients we meet ask whether their child needs braces or not. The majority of these parents anxiously want a straightforward answer of either “YES” or “NO”. Of course, although the question seems clear-cut, the answer is more challenging that you might have imagined, given the numerous things we have to consider, assess, and evaluate before we reach a confident decision. However, we completely understand your concern as a parent, and here you can find all the information you will need to decide whether you should be seeking an orthodontist’s help or not.

So, what can you, as a parent, do to know if your child needs braces?

Look for the signs.

What does this mean? Let’s take first things first.

Your child should start seeing a dentist the moment their first baby tooth erupts, which is usually between their first 6 months and up to age one. With regular visits to the dentist, your dentist (and consequently, you) will know when it is time for a full or minor intervention for braces, even when not all baby teeth have fallen yet. Some problems are best treated the earliest possible, but others call for our patience and a wait-and-see approach. This means that we may have to treat a child between 6-9 or wait until their late teens.

The signs that reveal a child will most likely benefit from braces include:

  • Irregular, early, or late loss of baby teeth
  • Blocked-out teeth
  • Crowded teeth
  • Misplaced teeth
  • Biting of the roof of the mouth
  • Biting of the cheek
  • Teeth that don’t meet or meet abnormally
  • Teeth and jaws disproportionate to the rest of the face
  • Shifting jaws of jaws that make sounds


Other than, your child may require braces if they have biting issues.

The problems classified as a bad bite are as followed:

  • Having extra teeth
  • Missing teeth
  • Crooked teeth
  • An underbite or an overbites
  • Incorrect position of the jaw


What is the best age for my child to be evaluated for orthodontic care?

The evaluation of your child’s teeth and jaw, as well as the treatment of bite-related problems, can start at various stages of dental development, and it always depends on the case and the child’s growth. Also, your orthodontist will weigh the benefits and risks of treatment or not treating. Some children may benefit from an orthodontic intervention from a young age (6-7 years old), but orthodontic treatments usually begin between the ages 9-14 because the children are still growing and have some (at least) permanent teeth. Consult your pediatric or general dentist to help you determine the ideal time for evaluation and treatment.

Why do children need braces?

The majority of orthodontic issues are genetic, which means that children inherit having too much space between teeth, missing teeth, extra teeth, protruding upper teeth, and so on. Some other problems develop because of certain habits, such as thumb-sucking, dental decay, breathing through the mouth, and poor nutrition, to name a few. Or, it could be because there is not sufficient room in the laws for the teeth, which makes the jaws not line up properly or the teeth become crooked or crowded.


If you are still unsure whether your child needs braces or not, don’t hold yourself back from contacting Straight Teeth Suite in Loughborough and asking for our advice and help. Book a consultation for FREE and we will be more than willing and happy to clear everything out for you, evaluate your child’s case, and provide you with the best solutions possible so that you child enjoys a lovely, straight smile the soonest possible.


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