Is my child able to have free braces on NHS?
The NHS does offer specialist orthodontic treatment for children under the age of 18 free of charge. However, not all children will qualify for this as there is a set criteria, known as the IOTN, and only those which meet the criteria will be treated. This may mean those with minor irregularities may not be offered NHS treatment but are still able to opt for private orthodontics.
The NHS contract for orthodontics funds all appliances and adjustments required during the entire treatment for patients which meet the criteria. The usual treatment may involve a fixed metal brace for roughly 18 months to 2 years, with regular visits every 6-8 weeks to see the orthodontist.
Why have braces?
This includes straightening your teeth so you’re able to care for your teeth and gums more easily, and improving your bite so you can eat more comfortably. Off course you will also notice the smile appearance will improve.
Treatment almost always involves using braces to straighten crooked, crowded or protruding teeth, close gaps between teeth, and correct the bite so the top and bottom teeth meet when the mouth is closed.
What is the best age to have braces?
The ideal age to have braces is usually around 12 or 13, while a child is still growing but all the adult teeth are out. A very small number of children may benefit from having treatment earlier. You can still have treatment as an adult but the treatment time may take slightly longer.
How successful are braces?
Orthodontics treatment usually works very well, but you need to stick with it for it to be successful.
Braces can trap food and cause more plaque to build up than usual, so you’ll need to take extra care with cleaning your teeth. You also need to watch what you eat – for example, avoid sugary foods and drinks.
You should continue to see your regular dentist while having orthodontic treatment.Please always use retainers after completion of orthodontic treatment to prevent relapse.
Can I have treatment privately? What is the difference?
While children can usually have free treatment on the NHS, those who can’t can always choose a private option. Having treatment privately is usually the only option for adults.
There are many differences between going private rather than NHS. The main advantages are you may be able to choose from ceramic brackets or even Invisalign (clear aligners) and you may be offered appointments outside of school hours. You can usually start treatment straight away while on the NHS there may be a waiting list of a few months before being seen.
The main disadvantage is cost with braces for children usually in the region of £2500 or more privately. This can usually be paid in stages over the course of treatment which may last up to 2 years.
At Harrow Weald Dental Practice we do have an orthodontist who usually provides children’s treatment for £2500 including retainers fixed or removeable.
Please call on 02084278120 or e mail us firstname.lastname@example.org to find out more information.