For most children, the average time to wear braces is between 1 and 2 years. However, the exact length of time can vary depending on the individual's circumstances. Orthodontic treatment may include more than just braces, and this could affect the length of your treatment plan. Many people wear braces for 18 to 30 months and braces are adjusted every 4 to 8 weeks to align the teeth properly.
Invisalign treatment can move teeth to their ideal position in less time than traditional orthodontic appliances. Parents often start to consider braces for their children when they are still very young. The right time to begin orthodontic treatment is usually around age 12 or 13, when the head and mouth are still growing and the process is more conducive to changing teeth. However, if your child has a mild alignment problem, treatment with braces can be relatively quick, sometimes in less than a year. If you suspect that your child will need braces, you can start seeing an orthodontist as soon as the first permanent teeth come out.
Your orthodontist will be able to tell you for sure how long your child will wear braces. After the average time of 1-2 years, your child can use a specially molded retainer, a small, hard piece of plastic with metal wires, or a thin piece of plastic shaped like a mouth guard. It's important to talk to your orthodontist about treatment expectations and be sure to follow their advice to avoid extending the amount of time you need to wear braces. From the gummy smile of childhood to the crooked teeth of elementary school, now is the time for braces.