Braces for kids and teenagers

Many children and teenagers need braces to correct an improper bite and ensure harmonious growth. But what kind of braces are right for young people?

Reading time: 6min

Topic: Kids and teens

Dental braces for kids and teenagers

Why should teens wear braces?

If malocclusions are corrected at an early age, bad habits and complications can be prevented further down the line.

  • When the dentition and bones are still growing, it is easier to influence their positioning.
  • During the transition from baby to adult teeth, the natural available space in the mouth can be leveraged to correct crowding without removing teeth, stripping teeth or operating on the patient.
  • When some malocclusions are left untreated, they can harden into the bone, which requires difficult, time-consuming treatments to correct. In the most severe cases, untreated malocclusions can also lead to damaged teeth and jaw joint problems in the long term. This can be prevented by having early treatment in childhood or adolescence.
  • Malocclusions can also cause problems with language and masticatory development. Treating kids and teens with braces can nip these problems in the bud as well.

bestsmile Teens Aligner

The transparent Aligners are available from age 11. Here you'll find everything you need to know about bestsmile Teens Aligner.

At what age can kids or teens start wearing braces?

Depending on the type of malocclusion, orthodontic treatment can start with the baby teeth or once the permanent dentition is in place. In many cases, it is advisable to start treatment once all adult teeth have started coming in, usually at around age 11.

We advise you to bring your child to the orthodontist at an appropriate time so that malocclusions can be detected and treated at any early stage.

Factors that impact when it makes sense to start treatment:

  • Early loss of baby teeth
  • Bad habits like thumb sucking or tongue pressing
  • Crooked teeth, incorrectly positioned jaws or a combination or both

What kinds of malocclusions in teenagers can be treated with Aligners?

How do clear Aligners work for teens?

  • Aligner treatment for children and adolescents should only be carried out by a certified orthodontist.
  • The treatment works best when the Aligners are worn 22 hours per day. This holds true for both children and adults.
  • X-rays are taken in order to identify growth tendencies and how the teeth, jaws and skull are positioned in relation to each other.
  • All teeth that are part of the permanent dentition can be moved and shifted with an Aligner.
  • Monitor progress via an app: AI monitoring ensures optimal treatment results for the patient.
  • Additional aids like attachments, bite ramps and elastics help the Aligner achieve the correct bite.

What are attachments, bite ramps and elastics?


Attachments are small tooth-coloured plastic elements that are fixed to the teeth so that the Aligner can better exert pressure on the teeth.

Bite ramps

Bite ramps are small areas on the inside of upper jaw aligners that temporarily prevent the patient from fully biting their teeth together. This helps to correct deep bites and cross bites.


Elastics are small rubber bands that the patient hangs on the brackets in order to improve their bite.

What kind of braces are suitable for children and teenagers?

Various orthodontic appliances can be used to correct improperly positioned jaws and crooked teeth. Some of these are particularly good for children and teens since their jaws are still growing.

There are a variety of braces that can be used successfully in both adults and teenagers. Braces that are often used for kids and teens are as follows:

  • Fixed brackets
  • Removable braces (including transparent Aligners)
  • Functional orthodontic appliances (often combined with headgear, a subgroup of removable appliances)

In our article on types of braces you can find more detailed information on treatments and costs.

  Costs Treatment time


9–18 months


very high

1.5–2 years

Conventional orthodontic expanders (e.g. palatal expanders)


2–3 years

Orthodontic corrections for kids and teens often make use of conventional fixed braces with brackets. The biggest advantages of this are:

  • proven results
  • can be used for very complicated malocclusions

However, the treatment is cumbersome and costly. For this reason, other types of braces are increasingly being used on teenagers. Transparent Aligners are especially popular among teens because of how discreet they are. Every type of dental brace has pros and cons.

Aligners for teens pros and cons


  • treatment time often shorter
  • discreet
  • easy to clean
  • can be taken out at any time


  • not suitable for all malocclusions
  • can get lost
  • depends on cooperation from the patient

Brackets for teens pros and cons


  • tried and tested method
  • also suitable for complex cases


  • very noticeable
  • hard to clean
  • often painful
  • if the patient doesn't practice to good oral hygiene, ugly decalcification spots can permanently form around the brackets

Conventional orthodontic expanders (e.g., palatal expanders)


  • easy to clean
  • can be taken out at any time


  • requires responsibility and cooperation from the patient
  • can impair speech and swallowing

Can clear braces be used for teenagers?

Whether invisible braces or clear aligners are suitable for teens depends on the severity of the malocclusion. Patients should always be examined by an orthodontist or orthodontic specialist.

Compared to conventional braces, bestsmile Aligners offer a lot of benefits for teenagers:

  • Discreet
  • Shorter treatment times
  • Lower costs
  • Removable at any time
  • Easy to clean
  • Usually fewer check-up appointments
  • Easier to maintain

bestsmile treatment for teens and kids

We also offer bestsmile Aligners for children and teenagers. The transparent braces correct slight to moderate malocclusions or incorrectly positioned jaws discreetly and efficiently. bestsmile Teens Aligners start at CHF 6,490 or CHF 130 per month.

Book an appointment now

Learn more about bestsmile Teens Aligners or schedule a free appointment for an expert consultation with our orthodontists.

Book appointment

How long does the treatment take?

Aligner treatment for kids and teenagers usually lasts between 9 to 18 months depending on the complexity and type of malocclusion.

How much do braces for teenagers cost?

The costs for braces for children or teens can vary dramatically. Usually you can expect treatment with conventional mental brackets to cost more than treatment with clear Aligners. At bestsmile Teens Aligners are available starting at CHF 6,490.

Does health insurance cover the cost of braces for adolescents?

Many types of bite correction for children and teenagers are covered by health insurance up to 80%. This can vary depending on the case and the insurer. For more detailed information, contact your health insurance company directly.

Are the results long-lasting?

The results of braces are as long-lasting for kids and teens as they are for adults. In order to maintain the patient's new bite, we recommend placing a permanent wire retainer on the back of the teeth. As an alternative, a somewhat thicker transparent aligner can be worn at night.

Retainer Aligner

A Retainer Aligner is a transparent tray – similar to a normal Aligner – that is worn following treatment. The material is more stable than the Aligner and only needs to be worn at night.

Wire retainer

A wire retainer is a thin wire that is fixed behind the teeth once treatment is completed. It is not visible from the outside, and it's also comfortable and permanently anchors the teeth in their new position.

Last update: 15.11.2023


whatsapp linkedin facebook

Start your journey to your new smile and book your free consultation.

Free appointment
Video thumbnail image