Should You Get Braces Before School?

Many teens are facing the possibility of getting braces as summer comes to a close. Is it better to get orthodontics started during summer break so you can make a grand entry on the first Getting Bracesday of school with pink, blue or purple braces? Or would it be better to wait a few weeks until school is in session, ensuring you get one more school picture braces-free?

Braces can help anyone of nearly any age achieve a healthier, more attractive smile. However, there’s a reason teens make up the majority of orthodontic patients: When your adult teeth are still finding their places, that’s when they’re easiest to manipulate. Fortunately for teens (and adults), braces aren’t what they used to be. They now come in a variety of colors for customization. The average orthodontics patient has braces for two years, but it varies from person to person.

Consider these pros and cons of getting braces in August or waiting until class is in session:

Cons

  • What about brace-free school pictures? This is the photo that will memorialize you forever in the yearbook. Some teens don’t want to have braces in photos, but they have options. A well-practiced, closed-lip smile can be stunning. You may also qualify for Invisalign instead of braces, which means you can remove the aligners for photos.
  • It’s not how you want to spend your summer break. Getting braces isn’t a huge deal, but it can seem like it when you’re 13 and have just three weeks of freedom left. Spending some of it at the orthodontist having braces put on might not be your idea of a carefree summer (but frozen yogurt after appointments can help quite a bit).

Pros

You’ll have time to adjust. Getting braces is much more comfortable than it used to be, but you’ll still go through an adjustment period. You might have to re-learn how to floss, how to eat without getting food stuck in your braces, and in some cases how to talk, since speech sometimes can be temporarily impacted with orthodontics. Get braces in August, and you’ll be able to adjust before school starts.

You can plan your back-to-school outfit around your braces. Choose new colored bands at each visit. If you get braces in August, you’ll be able to make your back-to-school debut in style. Choose a funky color to lay claim to your new look, saving the orange bands for October’s holiday festivities and planning ahead with red and/or green for the winter holiday break.

Braces are the best way to straighten and preserve all your natural teeth, improving bite and aesthetics. Contact Johnson Elite Orthodontics for more information about braces or Invisalign, and consider it a necessary accessory to your back-to-school look.