How you can help ensure your child’s future lines up perfectly
By Samantha Gluck
What’s the most powerful facial expression of all? A smile.
Like other facial expressions, the smile gives people a peek into our interior world. It’s the way we express joy and happiness. Have you ever been having a bad day when suddenly someone passes you in the hallway or on the sidewalk and gives you a smile that makes everything feel better? That’s the power of a smile!
Orthodontics Can Give Your Child Smile Power
Early orthodontic intervention boasts many benefits, including prevention of gum disease and tooth decay. Braces also improve speech, reduce bone loss, and resolve issues with under- and overbites. But after the braces come off, it’s actually the resulting boost in self-confidence that will do the most to improve your child’s future.
Even if your child’s teeth don’t seem very crowded, getting an orthodontic evaluation is worthwhile. And if he or she is worried about how they’ll look, the orthodontist can put his or her concerns to rest by showing off new types of brackets that blend in better with teeth, making them less noticeable. Even braces with the traditional metal brackets now allow kids to choose bands in a variety of colors that let their individuality shine through.
Don’t Be Like Me
Let me share a personal story with you. I’ve known for a couple of years that my daughter needs braces. Her teeth are a little crowded, but her smile still melts my heart. A few days ago, we were chatting as I made dinner and she asked about getting braces (admittedly, I’ve put off making an initial appointment). As we were ending our chat, she said, “I feel awkward and self-conscious smiling with an open mouth because of my teeth.” I can’t tell you how bad that one sentence made me feel. I called the next morning to schedule her consultation.
Don’t be like me. A study by the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry found that:
- 99.7 percent of Americans think a smile is important for social success
- 74 percent of Americans think not smiling, or having an unattractive smile, reduces an individual’s opportunity for success in a chosen career
- Only 50 percent of Americans feel happy about how their smiles look
Go ahead and schedule a first evaluation with an orthodontist. Like all of us, your child will face many challenges along the way. The power of a great smile can help reduce the effects of these challenges. And the best thing? You’ll know you did everything you could to improve your child’s future.