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2 Find out how best to make orthodontic treatment work for your children and their smile. Your step by step guide to getting the best orthodontic treatment for your child

As a parent, you want to safeguard the health of your child’s teeth. Seeing a specialist orthodontist for their orthodontic care can help you to feel confident that you’re doing everything in your power to give them the best possible treatment and care.

A person’s smile is a big deal. Fixing it is an investment in your child’s health and confidence as they grow. You want to know you’re not only getting what you pay for, but that you are in safe hands. Good orthodontic treatment can last a lifetime – but bad orthodontic treatment can too. That’s why we can’t stress enough the importance of seeing a specialist orthodontist. 

Here is a step-by-step guide to your orthodontic journey.

Initial assessment

We recommend taking your child to see a specialist orthodontist for an initial assessment around age seven. This assessment will tell you if your child needs early intervention. It could be that thumb sucking has distorted their bite, they’ve lost baby teeth early due to trauma or decay, or they have problems with their bite. If you have concerns before age seven let your orthodontist know. However, if you’ve missed this early milestone, it’s never too late to bring them in for an initial assessment.

During the first appointment the orthodontist will perform a thorough examination of your child's face, teeth and bite. They may take a panoramic (OPG) x-ray of your child’s teeth to assess their growth and development. They’ll explain what’s needed and the key milestones for their treatment. Sometimes, the orthodontist will suggest an age or developmental stage (such as after their last permanent tooth comes in) as the best time to start their treatment.

Understanding your options

The treatment options your orthodontist recommends will depend on your child. They’ll make their expert recommendations based on which option will be most effective. They’ll be able to advise on how much the treatment will cost and how long it will last, as well as explaining why some options are better than others.

Your specialist orthodontist is an expert who is constantly working to stay at the forefront of the latest developments in technology and best practice for their profession. They’ll be able to answer any questions you may have gathered from your own research.

Ask for a quote

Your orthodontist can prepare a quote for you for the full cost of your child’s treatment, to help you to plan for the years to come. Their office can also help you to arrange a payment plan to spread out the cost of your child’s treatment.

Start treatment

What's required next depends on the type of treatment. You may have a short wait while custom appliances are created. In the first appointment of your child’s treatment, your orthodontist may make a digital or plaster mould of your child’s teeth to assist with the creation of these appliances.

Fitting your child’s braces can take up to 1 hour as the orthodontist carefully attaches individual brackets to the teeth. Your child may experience some discomfort for a couple of days afterwards. Keep some pain relief and ulcer wax handy, and ask your orthodontist for advice to make it as easy as possible.

Caring for their braces or plate

Help your child to learn how to properly care for their braces, so you don’t need to make extra appointments to have wires replaced or brackets reattached. Before your child leaves their first appointment, the orthodontist will demonstrate how to properly brush and floss their teeth and around their braces. Keep to soft foods such as soups, yoghurts and bananas for a couple of days, while the teeth are adjusting to the appliances. Stay away from hard foods like nuts and hard muesli bars throughout the treatment to prevent breakages. If your child plays contact sports, ask your orthodontist about the best types of mouth guard for them to wear. They may need to get one custom fitted.

  • Your step by step guide to getting the best orthodontic treatment for your child
  • Initial assessment
  • Understanding your options
  • Ask for a quote
  • Start treatment
  • Caring for their braces or plate

Your step by step guide to getting the best orthodontic treatment for your child

As a parent, you want to safeguard the health of your child’s teeth. Seeing a specialist orthodontist for their orthodontic care can help you to feel confident that you’re doing everything in your power to give them the best possible treatment and care.



A person’s smile is a big deal. Fixing it is an investment in your child’s health and confidence as they grow. You want to know you’re not only getting what you pay for, but that you are in safe hands. Good orthodontic treatment can last a lifetime – but bad orthodontic treatment can too. That’s why we can’t stress enough the importance of seeing a specialist orthodontist. 



Here is a step-by-step guide to your orthodontic journey.


Initial assessment

We recommend taking your child to see a specialist orthodontist for an initial assessment around age seven. This assessment will tell you if your child needs early intervention. It could be that thumb sucking has distorted their bite, they’ve lost baby teeth early due to trauma or decay, or they have problems with their bite. If you have concerns before age seven let your orthodontist know. However, if you’ve missed this early milestone, it’s never too late to bring them in for an initial assessment.



During the first appointment the orthodontist will perform a thorough examination of your child's face, teeth and bite. They may take a panoramic (OPG) x-ray of your child’s teeth to assess their growth and development. They’ll explain what’s needed and the key milestones for their treatment. Sometimes, the orthodontist will suggest an age or developmental stage (such as after their last permanent tooth comes in) as the best time to start their treatment.


Understanding your options

The treatment options your orthodontist recommends will depend on your child. They’ll make their expert recommendations based on which option will be most effective. They’ll be able to advise on how much the treatment will cost and how long it will last, as well as explaining why some options are better than others.



Your specialist orthodontist is an expert who is constantly working to stay at the forefront of the latest developments in technology and best practice for their profession. They’ll be able to answer any questions you may have gathered from your own research.


Ask for a quote

Your orthodontist can prepare a quote for you for the full cost of your child’s treatment, to help you to plan for the years to come. Their office can also help you to arrange a payment plan to spread out the cost of your child’s treatment.


Start treatment

What's required next depends on the type of treatment. You may have a short wait while custom appliances are created. In the first appointment of your child’s treatment, your orthodontist may make a digital or plaster mould of your child’s teeth to assist with the creation of these appliances.



Fitting your child’s braces can take up to 1 hour as the orthodontist carefully attaches individual brackets to the teeth. Your child may experience some discomfort for a couple of days afterwards. Keep some pain relief and ulcer wax handy, and ask your orthodontist for advice to make it as easy as possible.


Caring for their braces or plate

Help your child to learn how to properly care for their braces, so you don’t need to make extra appointments to have wires replaced or brackets reattached. Before your child leaves their first appointment, the orthodontist will demonstrate how to properly brush and floss their teeth and around their braces. Keep to soft foods such as soups, yoghurts and bananas for a couple of days, while the teeth are adjusting to the appliances. Stay away from hard foods like nuts and hard muesli bars throughout the treatment to prevent breakages. If your child plays contact sports, ask your orthodontist about the best types of mouth guard for them to wear. They may need to get one custom fitted.