P uberty and adolescence can do a number on self esteem—and a confident smile matters and can make a difference. You can’t control hormones and growth spurts, but you can take charge of malocclusion (misaligned teeth) to boost confidence in your child and give your child a smile they love and want to share with the world!
But why does a confident smile matter? Aside from the obvious health benefits of a properly aligned bite and jaw, and the elimination of bad habits like mouth breathing, thumb sucking, snoring, and even childhood sleep apnea, having a confident smile has been proven to have profound effects on self esteem in the teen years and beyond.
Below are 4 reasons to boost confidence in your child through early orthodontics.
1. Teens without confident smiles report lower self esteem.
According to a study in the Journal of Clinical and Diagnostic Research on the “Impact of Dental Disorders and Its Influence on Self Esteem Levels among Adolescents,” children and teens ages 10-17 are more likely to report feelings of unworthiness and perceive themselves as unattractive than others if they have dental disorders. This study considered malocclusion as well as other issues with teeth and found that “Dissatisfaction with dental appearance is a strong predictor for low self esteem.”
2. Confident smiles can impact happiness in young adulthood.
In a 2015 study of US Households conducted by the ADA, 38% of young adults reported that “life in general is less satisfying due to the condition of mouth and teeth.” This means a great smile and healthy teeth can impact satisfaction with life in general. It seems dramatic, but if it is true that you can give your child a more satisfying life by fixing their smile, what a gift you could give!
3. Confident smiles can interfere with employment.
In that same study, 28% of young adults reported that the appearance of their mouth and teeth affected their ability to interview for a job. Any leg up in confidence for a job interview helps, so prioritize those straight teeth now to clear that obstacle.
4. Confident smiles mean more smiles in the world.
An even sadder statistic from the ADA study is that 1 in 4 adults reported that they avoid smiling because of the condition of their mouth and teeth—and when it is narrowed to young adults, the number climbs to 1 in 3. This means people are actively stopping themselves from smiling because they don’t like how their teeth look! So boosting your child’s confidence with early orthodontics would stop that instinct now, leading to more free and easy smiles in adulthood and beyond.
When you are raising your children, there is no doubt that you want them to be confident. You want them to believe in themselves and their ability to take on the world. And you definitely don’t want them to avoid smiling for any reason.
At Dr. Rondeau and Associates, we recommend a first visit as early as age 5 to implement a 2-phase approach to straight teeth and confident smiles. This jump-start guides the growth of teeth as the face develops, rather than waiting until the age of 12 when 90 percent of the face is developed. Early orthodontics can shorten the time for braces and prevent painful tooth extractions. It also can help your child to have a confident smile as they enter those tender adolescent years.
The bottom line is, confident smiles matter—and confident smiles mean that the world gets to see your child smile more often. Are you interested in taking the first easy step to giving your child a confident smile? Set up a free consultation appointment with Dr. Rondeau and Associates, and we’ll get you on your way.