4 Tips for Your Child’s First Halloween with Braces
When October hits, the days and night start to get a little cooler and all the kids in your life start anticipating all the spooky fun they will have on Halloween, but if you have a child experiencing their first Halloween with braces, he or she may be more afraid of missing out on all the good Halloween candy than anything else.
With braces, unfortunately, there are a number of food restrictions including candy, so how can your child enjoy Halloween while still preventing any damage to their teeth or braces?
Here are four tips for your child’s first Halloween with braces:
Keep Brace-Friendly Candy on Hand
While you can’t control what people in the neighborhood are giving out, you can make sure you have brace-friendly candy on hand at home that your child can enjoy worry free. Soft candy like chocolate and soft and chewy cookies are all good choices.
Carefully Go Through Candy Bag
Remind your child not to eat out of their candy bag until you have a chance to go through it and then when they bring it home, pull out any hard candy or candy with nuts or caramel that can get stuck to the wires or between the braces. Also pull out any gum, blow pops and tootsie rolls too.
If your child is attending any Halloween parties, you will also need to make sure they avoid restricted foods there. Candy apples and popcorn balls for example are a staple at Halloween parties but will cause a lot of havoc on your braces.
Make Your Own Treats
If you are having a Halloween party for your kids or attending one as a family, consider making and bringing your own brace-friendly treats and also to have on hand at home for your child as a replacement for all the candy that will be dumped from their candy bag. Make ghoulish brownies or Halloween cupcakes that all your kids can enjoy.
Monitor Your Child’s Brushing and Flossing
Halloween candy will most likely be in the house for weeks so it is important that you are monitoring your child’s brushing and flossing. Even with staying away from restricted types of candy, the extra sugar in your child’s diet at this time can lead to extra plaque build-up which can lead to cavities. Also, make sure your child is drinking a lot of water. That will help wash away the sugar so it doesn’t linger in the mouth.
The most important thing is to put the emphasis on what fun treats your child can eat instead of what they can’t have.
Keep it as positive as possible so your child still has an enjoyable Halloween.
If you haven’t chosen an orthodontic treatment for your child yet but know it is coming up soon, consider getting your child Invisalign aligners instead of the traditional metal braces. Invisalign aligners are removable so there are no food restrictions. Your child will be able to keep eating all their Halloween favorite candy all the way through treatment.
Here are some important things to know about Invisalign:
Invisalign aligners are made of a clear plastic not metal like braces and can be easily removed to eat and drink and brush your teeth.
The Invisalign 3D technology allows your child’s orthodontist to create a step by step plan for their treatment so you and your child will know what to expect every step of the way. The orthodontist will take x-rays and impressions of your child’s teeth to create a 3-D image of the teeth and then will use this to map the exact movement of teeth needed to straighten them out.
Once the plan is in place, your child’s first set of aligners will be custom fit to their mouth and he or she will need to wear them for at least 20-22 hours a day. If they don’t wear them for the prescribed amount of time, they will risk delaying your treatment so be diligent about wearing them.
Only certain teeth will be moved at a time. The Invisalign aligners control not only control how much force is exerted on the teeth, but the timing of it. Your child’s aligners will be switched out every two weeks as their teeth gradually shift into better alignment so expect more frequent trips to the orthodontist.
Unlike with braces, when you wear Invisalign aligners, there are no food restrictions because you can remove the aligners when you eat. Brushing and flossing your teeth is also easier because you can remove them. In order to prevent long gaps in between when you are wearing the aligners, make it a habit to brush your teeth and clean the aligners right after every meal so that you remember to put them back in right away.
How Long Is the Typical Treatment Plan for Invisalign? For tweens and teenagers, Invisalign typically takes as long as metal braces do. And there are accelerated orthodontic treatments that you can do on top of the Invisalign aligners to speed up the process.
Your child will also experience less discomfort because the clear plastic that the aligners are made of has a smooth surface so it will not cause any irritation to the teeth or gums like the metal wires can with braces. And while you may experience some soreness the first few days as you adjust to wearing the aligners, once your mouth adjusts you should have no problems.
Some people have a little adjustment to speaking with the aligners like they do with retainers, but again, that it is all temporary. Overall the aligners are very comfortable to wear and require little adjustments.
If you decide this is a better route for your child, remember that not all orthodontists specialize in Invisalign so make sure you do your research to see who does Invisalign in the Philadelphia area. Get a sense of your options and what it will cost and ask about their years of experience doing Invisalign. Ask about dental health insurance and if they have payment plans.
Don’t just settle for the first one you find though. Do research on the internet and ask family and friends for good references. Also, make sure you go on a couple consultation visits to make sure you are comfortable with not only the treatment but the orthodontist.
Want more tips for handling Halloween with braces or interested in learning more about Invisalign? Call Orthodontics Limited today.