7 Ways Braces or Clear Aligners Can Improve Your Child’s Overall Health

Overall health benefits of braces

The Overall Health Benefits of Braces

If your child has crooked or misaligned teeth, their dentist may have told you at their orthodontic evaluation that they need braces or clear aligners to straighten their smile. After all, a straighter smile is excellent for their self-confidence and can lead to better oral hygiene, as well as easier eating and speaking. This article will explore 7 ways braces and clear aligners can improve your child’s overall health and well-being.

Almost half of all children require braces to correct functional issues like an uneven bite. However, a staggering three-quarters of kids could see benefits from braces, not only straightening their teeth but also enhancing the appearance of their facial features and significantly improving their oral and overall health. From boosting self-esteem to helping prevent periodontitis and tooth decay, there are several reasons why investing in braces or clear aligners for your child is well worth considering. 

1. Boost your child’s self-esteem and emotional outlook on life.

Crooked or misaligned teeth can make children self-conscious, simultaneously lowering self-esteem and increasing social anxiety. And though teeth tend to yellow somewhat with age, teens with discolored teeth often don’t feel like smiling at all. This can keep them from enjoying social activities and can get in the way of their development. For this reason, many parents often ask us about options to boost their child’s self-esteem and emotional outlook. Braces or clear aligners can give them a straighter, more confident smile, boosting their self-esteem and helping them feel comfortable in social situations. And teeth whitening for teens can help eliminate any self-consciousness your teen feels when they smile. 

2. Prevent periodontitis and associated illnesses.

Crowded or misaligned teeth can be challenging to clean properly, leading to plaque and bacteria buildup that can cause gum disease (periodontitis) and bad breath. Straightening teeth with braces or clear aligners can make it easier to maintain good oral hygiene and reduce the risk of developing periodontitis and its associated jawbone loss.

3. Decrease their chances of developing tooth decay.

As we suggested above, straight teeth are easier to clean, making it less likely for food particles and plaque to accumulate in hard-to-reach places. If you think about it, flossing and brushing are exceptionally challenging with crowded teeth as tight spaces can shred floss and require more dexterity with the toothbrush to get into. If your child can’t reach certain areas of their teeth well, the left-behind bacteria can cause sensitivity, cavities, and the need for restorative treatment.

4. Freshen breath.

Who loves fresher breath? We all do. Proper oral hygiene is essential for good breath, and straight teeth make it easier to maintain that hygiene. When teeth overlap, they create crevices where bacteria can hide, making it harder to remove with regular brushing and flossing. The bacteria can then linger in the mouth and lead to bad breath. Your child can achieve a cleaner, fresher mouth with braces or clear aligners, so gone will be the days when you send them back to the restroom to brush or rinse again to get rid of that halitosis.

5. Reduce enamel wear and tear.

Teeth that are improperly aligned can experience extra wear and tear that increases their risk of chips, cracks, and other damage. Braces or clear aligners correct these issues and even out the biting pressure, helping preserve your child’s teeth and protecting them for years to come.

6. Relieve TMJ symptoms such as headaches.

Misaligned teeth can cause people to adjust their chewing patterns to compensate for their dental issues. This can result in one side of the mouth receiving more biting force than the other, leading to an uneven pressure distribution. As a result, the jaw’s alignment is thrown off, placing stress on the temporomandibular joints (TMJs) and surrounding muscles. TMJ disorders can cause headaches, jaw pain, and other discomfort. Braces or clear aligners can correct this unevenness and help relieve TMJ symptoms in the process.

7. Improve airflow and breathing.

Misaligned teeth can also impact the tongue’s position and affect airflow, potentially leading to breathing issues. Straightening the teeth can help improve airflow and breathing, reducing the risks of mouth-breathing and sleep apnea symptoms and leading to better overall health.

Pediatric Dental Specialists in Hastings and Grand Island offer clear aligners and braces for kids.

Your trusted pediatric dental team near Hastings, Nebraska, understands not only the need for early orthodontic interventions but also how much straight teeth mean to your child’s oral health and overall well-being. That’s why our Hastings and Grand Island locations offer braces and clear aligners for kids. If your child is self-conscious about having crooked teeth, don’t make them wait any longer. Request an appointment today.