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All Posts in Category: Crooked Teeth

causes of misaligned teeth

Why You Have Misaligned Teeth and What You Can Do

PART 1 – WHY YOU HAVE MISALIGNED TEETH

Your teeth are meant to fit within your mouth with no spacing or crowding issues so that they can function as they should. They should be in a straight position with no twisting or rotation. The teeth in your upper jaw should also form a slight overlap with the teeth in your lower jaw to allow your molars to meet correctly.

The Disadvantages of Misaligned Teeth

Any misalignment, or malocclusion, in your teeth, can result in a wide range of oral health complications. It can interfere with how well you can chew your food and can make cleaning your teeth more difficult, exposing you to the increase chances of having cavities, gingivitis or tooth decay. It can also be a source of embarrassment, making your feel self-conscious about your smile and overall appearance.

Causes of Misaligned Teeth

  • Lower and upper jaws that are malformed or are not the same size
  • Trauma that results in jaw misalignment
  • Abnormally shaped teeth
  • Extended bottle feeding during early childhood
  • Thumb sucking during early childhood
  • Genetics
  • Regular use of the pacifier after the age of three
  • Improperly fitted devices, such as crowns, fillings or braces

PART 2 – WHAT YOU CAN DO TO CORRECT YOUR MISALIGNED TEETH

The treatment of misaligned teeth during childhood is most effective as it can prevent alignment issues that can be very difficult and expensive to resolve in the future. Children who are at least seven years old may be treated with the correct dental appliance to straighten their teeth.

The type of treatment you receive will depend heavily on the type of misaligned teeth you have. Cases in which the misalignment of the teeth is very slight may not require treatment. Mild cases of misaligned teeth may require the use of dentures, crowns, veneers or bridges to improve the alignment of your teeth and jaw. However, for most cases, especially those in which the misalignment is severe, you may be treated with braces.

Each of the various types of braces is used to correct a particular misalignment issue. The type of braces your orthodontist may recommend will depend on your unique teeth and personal needs:

  • Invisible Aligners: These types of braces are best used for mild cases of misaligned teeth. With their clear color, they are almost unnoticeable. They are removable and can be more costly than other types of braces.
  • Fixed Braces: These can be made from metal or ceramic. A bracket is attached to the front of each affected front tooth in the upper and lower jaws and is linked together using orthodontic wires. Metal braces are less expensive and more effective than ceramic braces. However, ceramic braces tend to look more natural.
  • Lingual Braces: These are fixed metal braces that are used to treatment misalignment of the back teeth. They may be more suitable for adults and can be a challenge to keep clean.

Cases of misaligned teeth are treatable for both children and adults. Speak with your dentist to determine which treatment options are most suitable for you.

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crooked teeth

7 Ways Crooked Teeth Affect Your Oral Health

Crooked teeth affect far more than your appearance. The American Dental Association has confirmed that crooked teeth can be detrimental to your overall dental health. Here are seven ways that crooked teeth affect your oral health.

1. Red, Swollen Gums

Crooked teeth can lead to red, swollen gums. Gum health is as much a part of oral health as your teeth. When you have crooked teeth, the part of the tooth that you can’t see—that is hidden beneath the gum line—is crooked, too. This crookedness can lead to gum irritation and inflammation, which shows itself as red and swollen gums. When your gums are in this sensitive condition, you can’t properly clean teeth along the gum line, which further increases the odds of poor oral health.

2. Interference with Proper Chewing

It’s challenging or impossible to chew properly when you have crooked teeth. The chewing process relies on a carefully aligned jaw and teeth. Proper contact between the upper and lower teeth is essential to ensure that chewing occurs the way it should. With crooked teeth, bites of food aren’t chewed correctly. This can lead to problems with digestion and even nourishment, as well.

3. Increased Risk of Tooth Decay

The misalignment of crooked teeth can easily lead to increased risk of tooth decay. The crookedness of the teeth inhibits proper brushing and flossing, increasing the likelihood that food remains between teeth even after brushing.

4. Increased Chances of Chronic Halitosis

When you can’t brush and floss teeth efficiently, as is the case with crooked teeth, the chances of developing chronic halitosis are increased. Halitosis, or bad breath as it is commonly called, occurs as the result of poor dental hygiene, which can be a direct outcome of crooked teeth.

5. Excessive Jaw Strain and Pain

Persons with crooked teeth often unconsciously adjust their jaw movement to enable easier chewing or speaking. This constant adjustment can lead to jaw strain and pain that sometimes even gets so bad it can become a condition known as TMJ.

6. Increased Likelihood of Cracking or Breaking a Tooth

Since crooked teeth don’t fit together right, there is an increased likelihood of cracking or breaking a tooth. This happens because the person is constantly trying to readjust the position of their jaw to speak or eat. Subsequently, the inordinate connection and contact on teeth can lead to tooth fractures and chipping.

7. Progression of Gingivitis or Periodontal Disease

The poor oral hygiene that comes from having crooked teeth can quickly lead to the progression of gingivitis or periodontal disease. These two stages of teeth and gum disease are extremely serious and threatening to overall health as well as oral health. Gingivitis may be treated, but with crooked teeth, the chances of it returning are very high. Periodontal disease can ultimately lead to the need for oral surgery or even tooth loss.

If you’ve been delaying treatment for crooked teeth, it’s time to act. Getting crooked teeth fixed isn’t an act of vanity. It’s a responsible thing to do that will help to ensure you have good oral health and overall health.

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