If your child is scheduled to be fitted for braces, you are likely concerned about both the appointment itself and what the future holds. It is only natural to be worried about whether your child will suffer any discomfort or how well they will cope with their braces over the period they will be wearing them. This anxiety can be compounded by your child's own fear and your need to keep up a strong face for them. Fortunately, getting fitted for braces does not need to be a traumatic or difficult experience. In fact, it likely won't be bad at all.

You can help yourself and your child get through this process by arming yourself with knowledge about what the first hours, days, and weeks with new braces will be like.

The Procedure Won't Be Painful

This is likely the biggest fear shared by both you and your child. You can reassure your child that the process of having braces fitted will not be painful at all and will involve a fairly minimal amount of discomfort. Your child may dislike the feel or the taste of the glue that is used, but there will be no pain from any part of the process. In most cases, the entire procedure will take less than two hours from beginning to end.

If your child is already comfortable with dental visits, this is likely to be an especially easy one. If your child has some dental anxiety, you can reassure them that nothing painful or uncomfortable will be happening during this appointment.

There Will Be an Adjustment Period

While getting fitted for the braces will not be painful, your child is likely to experience some discomfort over the coming days and weeks as they adjust to the braces. The pressure braces place on teeth can be uncomfortable at first, and for young children, this can sometimes be difficult. It is important that you reassure your child that this is normal and that nothing is wrong.

Unfortunately, there is still the potential that your child will experience some pain as they adjust. This may come in the form of small cuts or abrasions as the braces rub against different parts of the mouth, or soreness in the gums from the braces themselves. If your child is finding the pain particularly distressing, discuss which mild, over-the-counter pain relievers are best with your orthodontist. Your child will generally stop experiencing regular discomfort within a few weeks of having their braces fitted.

They Probably Won't Need to Be Tightened Too Often

Having braces tightened is usually the most uncomfortable part of the entire process. There will almost always be a period of discomfort following a tightening, and it may be necessary to return to mild pain relievers for a short period of time afterward. This period of soreness should last for less than a week, however, and you can help to make your child feel better by reassuring them that it won't need to be done too often.

With modern braces, you can expect an evaluation and tightening about once every six weeks. Since this procedure is not always comfortable, consider giving your child a special treat of ice cream or other soft food before or after the appointment. By making the appointment something to look forward to, you can help ease any associated anxieties.

For more information, contact a children's orthodontist today.