Offices in Temecula and Lake Elsinore — (951) 699-8011
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Temecula and Lake Elsinore - (951) 699-8011
Payment Options, if Qualified

When is the Best Time for Braces?

Your Best Braces Options in Temecula and Lake Elsinore

Is There a Perfect Age for Braces?

In any given year, approximately 4 million people are wearing braces for one reason or another. This number contributes to the fact that braces are very much in demand and needed by people, young and old. For many, it can be hard to know when the best age is to get braces.


top orthodontist for childrenWhen it comes to children, the consensus among orthodontists is that children should receive an initial orthodontic evaluation at around the age of 7, or just after the first adult molars erupt. At this age, the child’s mouth is still developing. If a problem is found, it is much easier to treat a mouth still in development than one fully formed.

If no pressing issues are evident during this first meeting, the orthodontist will ask for the child to return later, usually after another 12 months, to re-evaluate how the jaws and teeth are developing.

For younger children, if treatment is advised, it is usually with an easy to tolerate orthodontic appliance to make space for teeth or positively influence jaw growth. Early limited braces are only needed if teeth are in dangerous relationships or if the parent/child has significant social concerns related to the appearance of the teeth.

Full braces are most common once all the permanent teeth have erupted, typically between 11 and 13 years of age.


While children are the most common demographic to be treated orthodontically, there are plenty of adults receiving care as well. In fact, 1 in 5 braces wearers are over the age of 18 and the proportion of adult patients has risen dramatically over the last 20 years. Adults in their 50s, 60s, and even 70s are being treated regularly in our office. It is never too late to get a boost in confidence or address dental issues that have been put off for a long time.

No one should feel they are too old for braces. People of all ages tend to experience a tremendous boost in self-esteem both during and after finishing treatment.

At Burke & Redford Orthodontists, our board-certified orthodontists are happy to answer any questions or concerns a child or parent might have concerning braces. A healthy, beautiful smile you can be proud of is our priority. There are two convenient locations in Temecula and Lake Elsinore.

Signs to Determine If Braces are Needed

When it comes to figuring out if braces may be needed, there are some tell-tale signs to look for, both in children and adults.

Signs in Children

In children, there are several behaviors and signs to keep an eye out for that could signal potential issues of the teeth and jaws. A growing child may be adopting certain habits that are harmful to their developing mouth. Conversely, a child may have inherited dental issues that require treatment.

Below are some of the common occurrences that indicate the need for a child to receive an orthodontic consultation:

  • Open bite (the front teeth do not meet when the back teeth are closed)
  • Protrusion of upper front teeth
  • Deep bite (there is excessive overlap of the front teeth when biting down)
  • Underbite (the lower teeth sit in front of the upper teeth when back teeth are closed)
  • Excessive spacing or large gaps between teeth
  • Thumb sucking (or other oral habits)

Additionally, you should check with an orthodontist if you see or suspect any of the following in your child:

  • Problems involving chewing or biting
  • Speaking with a lisp or other speech issues
  • Jaws that shift or make sounds
  • Facial imbalance
  • Consistent breathing out of the mouth alone
  • Abnormally slow or fast loss of baby teeth
  • Biting of the cheeks, lips, or roof of mouth
  • Tooth clenching or grinding

If you see any of the above in your child at any point after the age of 7, an orthodontic consultation should be scheduled with a board-certified orthodontist.

Dr. Redford and Dr. Burke work seamlessly together and provide children requiring orthodontic treatment with a comfortable, safe environment. If parents have any questions or concerns whatsoever, our doctors are happy to answer them at any time.

Signs in Adults

Temecula Invisalign Patient at Burke & Redford OrthodontistFor adults with healthy teeth and gums, braces can usually be applied with no problem to fix a crooked smile or bite misalignment.

However, if there are teeth or gum issues related to decay, damage, or disease, these issues must be addressed and corrected before teeth are moved. Moving teeth with underlying disease can result in bigger problems, including the potential loss of teeth or surrounding bone.

Below are some problems to watch for in adults:

  • Crowding of teeth
  • Spacing or gaps between teeth
  • Anterior crossbite (lower teeth sitting ahead of the upper teeth when biting down)
  • Tooth wear
  • Impacted or missing teeth
  • Protrusion of front teeth
  • Open bites (the front teeth don’t meet when back teeth are closed)
  • Deep bites (excessive vertical overlap of the front teeth)

There are many benefits that adults enjoy as a result of orthodontic treatment. Self-confidence and self-esteem increase, general oral health and function of teeth improves, and it can help prevent improve gum and bone health surrounding the teeth. It is never to late to enjoy these improvements to your smile!

What Are the Options Best When it Comes to Braces?

Contrary to what people commonly believe, there are several options for both children and adults when it comes to the type of braces that can be used for orthodontic correction. The orthodontist will explain the pros and cons of each option and how effective each type of braces will be for whatever problems exist. Final treatment decisions are made among the child and parent or adult patient and the orthodontist.

It is important to remember that braces (or clear aligners) are simply a tool. The results that are achieved in treatment are dependent on the skill level of the doctor and staff!

Below are the some of the braces offered to patients by the top doctors at Burke & Redford Orthodontists.

Damon Braces

top damon braces orthodontistDamon braces have much to offer a patient in terms of convenience and comfort. When it comes to braces, these factors can be exceedingly important to the patient, which is why the self-ligating systems like the Damon system have become quite popular.

Damon braces are self-ligating. They work using a sliding mechanism built into the design of the braces. This mechanism allows the wire to adjust on its own as the teeth begin to straighten.

Light, continuous pressure is easily applied to teeth with self-ligating systems. In addition, shape memory wires that work continuously over long periods of time allow for longer intervals between adjustment appointments.

While check-ups are required to track progress and adjust the braces, fewer visits are required than with traditional braces. This is a big plus for those with busy schedules.


Invisalign is an increasingly popular option for patients who love the idea of a beautiful smile without the “braces look.” Invisalign utilizes transparent plastic aligners the patient can remove when eating, brushing, or flossing. A series of these clear plastic aligners are worn until the teeth straighten out and the final result is achieved.

Invisalign can be very successful when used in the right case. There are some limitations with clear aligners, however, and these limitations will be clearly explained during your initial consultation if they apply to your case. It is important that you know how successful braces or Invisalign will be in your unique case.

Ceramic Braces

Clear Braces Cost - Before Pictures - Burke Redford Orthodontists Clear Braces - Ceramic Braces - After Pictures

Ceramic braces make use of white or translucent brackets which make the braces less noticeable. In addition to this benefit, many people opt for ceramic braces because they don’t want the responsibility of wearing a removable appliance (like Invisalign) 22 hours per day. Others opt for ceramic braces when they understand it is a more precise material for the orthodontist to work with, but still want an esthetic option.

Metal Braces

Metal braces are the traditional braces that everyone knows and loves—wires and all.

Lingual Braces

Lingual braces are significantly different than other braces options, in that, they are braces made for the inside of the teeth. While this makes them entirely invisible, there are some downsides.

As one can imagine, this makes them difficult to clean properly. It is hard enough having to clean traditional braces, let alone those you cannot see with ease. Becoming accustomed to lingual braces and tolerating them is more difficult as well. Speech problems and sores on the tongue may persist longer than with other appliances.

All in all, lingual braces may be invisible, but they do pose considerable difficulty and discomfort to the patient.

If you think you or your child may require any type of braces, Burke & Redford Orthodontists offer consultations at no charge to prospective patients. To schedule a consultation, or if you have any questions, please call us at (951) 699-8011. We have locations in Temecula and Lake Elsinore.

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