Braces are part and parcel of corrective orthodontic treatment whose goal is to align various forms of defective dental layouts. These include underbite, overbite, and misaligned jaws. Once an adult is subjected to braces, it takes 3 to 4 years to realign the teeth. Children with braces take two years for their teeth to align and visibly improve their smiles.
Even though braces are a useful and effective form of orthodontic treatment, this has not come without resistance from teens, who would rather skip treatment for flimsy reasons. The Texas law recognizes a juvenile as a minor aged between 10 and 17 years. This fact puts teens under the jurisdiction of a parent or guardian. Motherhood is a part of a parent’s responsibility to ensure that kids get medical care and intervention whenever they need it. Below are ways to tackle resistance to braces by kids.
Know the Underlying Reasons for Refusal
To successfully circumvent braces’ resistance from your children and teens, establish the reason for their reluctance. This is because some of their fears are unfounded. Take time to inquire from a child the reason for their attitude and pay keen attention to their answers. Address their questions and concerns truthfully and unambiguously. Be calm and non-confrontational.
Address Self-esteem and Bullying Issues
Teens have impressionable characters, and if they feel insecure about their physical appearance, perhaps because other kids are likely to poke fun at them, their resistance threshold increases. To overcome the bullying prejudice, try to associate braces with people your children consider cool. Make them understand that braces are for their good and do not interfere with their status in society.
Amplify the good that comes with braces, such as a great smile once they come off. Encourage your teen to talk to people who once wore braces but now have beautifully aligned teeth.
Improved Orthodontic Treatment Options
As technology advances, the discipline of orthodontics has made great strides. It is no longer one-size-fits-all. Today, options exist that make the old-school large metallic braces a thing of the past. Among these are clear braces, Invisalign, and lingual braces. Kids can make fashion statements by wearing colored wires on their braces.
Address Pain Concerns
If your teen is afraid of pain, counter the fear with an assurance that the initial pain or the discomfort that comes with wearing braces can be eased with over-the-counter pain meds and should dissipate with time.
Pick an Ideal Time to Install Braces
There is such a thing as the best time to get braces for your kids. Getting them installed during the long summer break gives them a chance to get accustomed to them. It also allows them time to privately deal with initial misgivings or challenges before reintegrating into the community.
Address Treatment Duration Concerns
Another cause of braces’ resistance among teens is the fear that the treatment will take too long. For visible results, adults should wear braces for 3 to 4 years, whereas children should have them on for 24 months. Teens who faithfully follow through with their treatment regimen can expect to wear braces for about 18 months if they relentlessly honor the orthodontist appointments.
Journaling the Treatment Course
Encourage the teen to make a fun journal of transformation as they go through the treatment, posting pictures depicting their teeth’s transformation as they get closer to the end of the treatment.
Handle Teen Financial Concerns
Sometimes, teens resist orthodontic treatment for fear of being a financial burden to their parents. If that is the case, it is prudent to alleviate this concern by informing them that the insurance will cover it.
Emphasize the Benefits of Teen Orthodontic Treatments
Do not stop emphasizing the advantages of orthodontic treatment during your teenage years. Explain the drawbacks of misaligned teeth, even when they do not appear severely crooked. Problems related to misaligned teeth include gum disease, tooth decay, and broken teeth. These are usually caused by uneven wear and tear.
Maximum use of Available Health Insurance
Motherhood is about offering guidance and counsel to kids. It is about training kids to maximize available opportunities such as health insurance.
Teens can be short-sighted in that they don’t think far into the future. Help them put into perspective the validity and privileges of facilities like health insurance, which they are entitled to while under your jurisdiction. Encourage them to take advantage of parental medical insurance while it lasts, otherwise, they may have to pay for orthodontic treatment themselves. Ideally, the older a person is, the longer they have to wear the braces. The intermittent wearing of braces often results in prolonged treatment.