Q: What if my child needs braces?
A: Although braces are pricey (they average between $5,000 and $7,000 depending on your child's needs and where you live) and most insurance companies won't cover them, they can make a huge difference in your child's oral health and self-esteem. These days braces can be placed on kids as young as 7 to correct problems like crooked teeth, teeth that stick out beyond the lip, severe crowding, a crossbite (when the lower teeth overlap with the upper ones) and an underbite (when the jaw sticks out abnormally). This means that most children will have finished treatment by the time they reach adolescence and can enjoy their teenage years with perfectly straight teeth. Many dentists suggest that all kids be evaluated for braces by an orthodontist at age 7. This specialist is trained to understand how your child's mouth will develop over time and can help figure out the best course of treatment for your kid.