If you’ve always wanted to have a picture-perfect smile but feel like your teeth are too crooked or crowded, you will be happy to know that even as an adult, there are corrective measures available that can help you get the results you’re looking for. Orthodontics have come a long way in recent years and now fixing crooked teeth is easier to achieve than ever before – with the right specialist, of course!
A Basic Look at What Causes Crooked Teeth
Before seeking treatment, you may be interested to learn a bit about what causes crooked teeth. In most cases, the ultimate cause is a person’s genetics. Common issues such as underbites, overbites and crowded teeth are the result of jaw malalignment determined by genes. Some people have protruding upper teeth (overbite), others have protruding lower teeth (underbite), while others have painfully cramped teeth that are simply too big for their mouths.
However, some causes of crooked teeth are not the result of genetics, such as a child growing up with protruding teeth resulting from years of thumb sucking. Less commonly, jaw malalignment is sometimes the result of an injury or an accident. Often, crooked teeth are the result of a combination of genetic and environmental factors.
Improper Nutrition May Be at the Heart of Jaw Malalignment
There is a growing body of evidence that substantiates the premise that poor dietary habits of mothers during pregnancy and of infants in their formative years may be the underlying cause of jaw malalignment leading to crooked teeth. The body demands vital building blocks to create strong bones and the bones of the jaw are no exception.
One case in point is that of a young Pakistani boy who developed skeletal scurvy (malformations of bones) due to a deficiency in his diet. While scurvy is rare now in developed nations, there was a time even in the developed world when children would develop osteopenia resulting in crooked bones. This was most evidenced in the development of long bones which affected their gait, but could also be seen in misaligned jaws. The deficiency is typically due to a lack of vitamin C, but calcium also plays a huge role in the development of strong teeth and bones.
3 Common Orthodontic Procedures to Achieve Straight Teeth
When you consult with your orthodontist, there are a variety of ways in which crooked teeth can be straightened. Each technique may be dependent upon the age, lifestyle or underlying causes but there are definitely procedures which can remedy even the most crooked teeth.
The 3 most common treatments for crooked teeth are:
- Invisalign System
Most people are familiar with those metal braces often seen on adolescents as parents seek to help their children grow up with beautiful smiles and straight teeth, but there are other kinds of braces as well. Retainers work in much the same way, but the Invisalign System is a registered trade name for an innovative way to approach teeth straightening. In the Invisalign System, the patient wears a tray which can be conveniently removed to eat, drink or go out in public. Oral hygiene is made easier as well.
Crooked Teeth Are More than Just a Stigma
In the Western world, crooked teeth are a stigma we learn to live with or find treatment for. But in other cultures, crooked teeth are sometimes considered to be fashionable. In Japan, for example, some women are electing to have their teeth misaligned in order to look more attractive to young Japanese men.
That isn’t the case here at home, however, and even more important than good looks is what crooked teeth can mean to your health.
Crooked or crowded teeth can result in:
- Tooth decay
- Improper chewing and digestion of foods
- Greater risk of breaking a tooth (especially in jaw malalignment)
- Difficulty in routine daily brushing and oral hygiene
If you consider for just a moment why proper chewing of the foods we eat is so important, you’ll understand why even medical doctors advise patients to have their teeth straightened to aid in digestion. Chewing along with the saliva in your mouth is the very first part of the digestive system in your body. If food isn’t broken down into small enough particles, your stomach and intestines can be unnecessarily stressed.
Enzymes in your digestive tract can break down foods so that nutrients can be easily absorbed through the lining of your intestines, but enzymes cannot effectively break down foods which must be passed more quickly than they can be sufficiently broken down.
Never underestimate the importance of straight teeth on your overall health.
Let’s Put a Smile Back on Your Face
For too long you have been ashamed of smiling because of what others might think of you. Whether you fear others might think your crooked teeth are the result of poor dental hygiene, or you fear poor hygiene caused by crooked teeth, there is a solution, and we are here to help you find it. Our team specializes in finding the perfect solution for each patient based on the nature of their dental issues and their lifestyle.
From the Invisalign System which no one ever need know about to invisible braces and retainers, there are many options to choose from for every need and every budget. We can give you your biggest, brightest smile, but first you need to ask for help. Getting started on that winning smile starts with a consultation with our experienced team.