3 Ways To Support Your Teen After Learning Of The Need For Teeth Alignment

Now that your teen has the need for braces, they're likely struggling with the idea of fitting in at school and being able to continue the active lifestyle they are accustomed to. Luckily, there are a few things you can do to effectively support your teen throughout the teeth alignment process. Try one or more of the following options:

Consider Invisalign

One of the most effective ways to make your teen feel more comfortable with their teeth straightening treatments is to choose the Invisalign route over the traditional braces option. The Invisalign method involves wearing custom-made clear teeth trays for an average of 20-22 hours a day. The trays are comfortable, easy to put on and take off, and provide the opportunity for your teen to continue participating in their favorite sports and activities.

Invisalign makes it easy to brush and floss, too, which means that it will be easier for your teen to take good care of their teeth throughout the treatment process. And possibly the biggest benefit your teen will enjoy while wearing Invisalign is the fact that they aren't noticeable, so your teen won't feel like they stand out at school or while hanging out with friends. Overall, investing in Invisalign for your teen will help them maintain their self-esteem and confidence during treatment, which is the most valuable support you can offer them.

Create a Rewards Program

The commitment of wearing braces or Invisalign trays can be taxing on teens who tend to be care-free and want to take on as little responsibility as possible. They'll have to clean their braces or trays in addition to brushing and flossing twice a day. This extra responsibility may go on for months, so consider supporting your teen's efforts by creating a rewards program at home. Do this by hanging a white board on the wall in your home somewhere and writing down a few goals for your teen to achieve each week.

Brushing both morning and night, remembering to put Invisalign trays back in after dinner, and keeping track of accessories for the entire week are some ideas to start with. Sit down with your teen and make a full list of tasks that can be used as goals in the coming months and rotate those tasks each week. If your teen achieves a task during the week, mark the goal on the white board with a star. If there's a star next to all the tasks at the end of the week, present your teen with a small gift such as a pair of movie tickets or a gift certificate to the music store.

Keep Communication Positive

Because of the extra responsibility that comes with wearing braces or Invisalign trays, there's a chance that your teen will complain about the process occasionally when the topic arises. It's important to make sure that you keep your conversations positive by reminding your teen of the benefits they can expect once their treatment is complete.  

When your teen shows disdain for cleaning their Invisalign trays or having to wear them to bed, be a reminder that they'll enjoy straight, healthy teeth and have less of a reason to see their dentist in the years to come. If complaints are accompanied with reminders of brushing or flossing, remind your teen that not only can they can earn a reward at the end of the week, but they can also count on having an envious smile to show off when all is said and done. Get them used to turning negative emotions into positive possibilities and their experience will be more enjoyable overall.

With the help of these tips and ideas, you should find it easy to provide your teen with the support they need to stay positive throughout the teeth alignment treatment process. For more information and options, contact an orthodontic clinic that specializes working with teens, such as Cobbe Dental & Orthodontics.