Malocclusion, or having crooked teeth, affects around one in every two individuals globally and can have a substantial negative effect on a person’s self-esteem in both children and adults. Your life’s quality may be impacted by your teeth, in addition to how you look.
Crowded, misaligned, or overlapping teeth can make it difficult for you to chew, as well as severely wear down your teeth and make cleaning them difficult. This may result in tooth decay, chipped teeth, persistent headaches, and other issues. However, there are several methods available for straightening teeth, including veneers, metal braces, clear aligners, and retainers, among others.
Why Do Teeth Get Misaligned?
Perfect teeth, when the upper set slightly overlaps the lower set and the molars properly interlock, are rather uncommon. However, the majority of problems are small, and many don’t need treatment.
The size inequality between the upper and lower jaws causes malocclusion. Additionally, it can happen if the teeth are not the proper size for the jaw.
Your genetic background has a significant role in the way your teeth line up. You are more likely to have crooked teeth if your family has a history of having them; this is a hereditary feature.
Children who are born with cleft palates, a birth abnormality in which the palate’s tissues do not fully mature, are more likely to have crooked teeth later in life. This also applies to situations with cleft lip, in which the top lip has been impacted by this abnormality.
Forward Posturing And Tongue Thrusting
Tongue thrusting is another problem that causes teeth misalignment. This condition, which mostly affects babies and young toddlers, causes your tongue to constantly brush against your upper teeth when you swallow. Tongue thrusting, which can be caused by problems with the jaw structure or a tongue that is excessively big, can eventually lead to misaligned teeth.
Some indications of this conduct include:
- Bite openly (the front teeth never join when closed)
- an obvious tongue between the teeth
- through the mouth
- Lisp, difficulties with s’s and z’s
- difficulty eating and swallowing
- Eating that is sloppy, quick, or extremely slow
Teeth can be severely affected by the alignment of the jawbone and/or skull in cases of severe falls or accidents. Crooked teeth result from the upper and lower jaws’ ability to recover from the damage in an unbalanced or distorted manner.
Lack Of Dental Care
Another typical reason for crooked teeth is oral health issues, particularly throughout adolescence. They could consist of:
- Added teeth
- missing teeth
- Inadequately fitted dental crowns, fillings, braces, or other dental appliances
- teeth with unusual shapes
- damaged teeth (when the tooth puts pressure on a bone or other tissue)
There are a few more causes of crooked teeth, such as:
- development of a tumour in the mouth or on the jaw
- Lip-sucking and biting
- regularly exhaling from the mouth
- early infant teeth loss
Crooked Teeth-Related Issues
Sometimes, having misaligned teeth might lower your quality of life. For instance, if you have crooked teeth, it would be uncomfortable for you to chew, which would make eating painful. Additionally, some people may stop smiling or avoid social situations because they are so self-conscious about their crooked teeth.
In addition to these health risks, crooked teeth may also result in:
Caring for your teeth when they are crowded or misaligned is difficult by nature. Bad breath, plaque, tooth decay, and finally gum disease are all consequences of poor dental and oral health over time. When the gums are red, swollen, and itching, the condition is known as gingivitis, the first stage of gum disease. Gum bleeding is another sign of gum disease. However, if gingivitis is not treated, it develops into periodontitis, when the issue spreads to the bone and causes tooth and bone loss.
Wear And Tear
Teeth with misalignments are more likely to experience wear and tear. However, wear and tear is just the beginning of the issue. A common result of severe wear and tear is TMJ dysfunction, also known as temporomandibular jaw problem, in which patients complain of intense discomfort or even jaw bone locking when they move.
Having trouble chewing due to crooked or crowded teeth might lead to digestive problems.
The most prevalent result of crooked teeth is speech difficulties, such as difficulty pronouncing a few words.
Poor Self Esteem
Since our smiles are a reflection of our personalities, those with crooked or misaligned teeth often struggle with low self-esteem. Furthermore, unappealing discoloured teeth that make individuals feel ashamed might be a sign of poor oral health. These are the most common causes for cosmetic dental procedures.
Options For Treating Crooked Teeth
There are various options you may consider with a dentist or orthodontist if you feel that straightening your teeth is the best option for you.
With the use of brackets, bands, and flexible wire, fixed metal braces fasten to the teeth. If you have more complicated dental alignment difficulties, these braces could be a better option. Sometimes fixed braces are not enough, and headgear is needed. Most people only wear headgear at night.
From their first days, metal braces have advanced significantly. Less metal and smaller brackets are now being used. Additionally, they are softer than before. You may also select from a variety of colourful rubber bands that includes to suit your individuality.
They don’t stick out as much as metal brackets since ceramic braces and the archwires connecting them are transparent or tooth-colored. Ceramic brackets can broke and are more prone to staining than metal ones, but the straightening procedure is the same for both.
As with Invisalign, invisible braces are almost unnoticeable. Only adults and teenagers allow to wear them.
Your mouth is fitted specifically for the transparent plastic aligners. They are changed out and refilled twice a month, fitting over each tooth like a mouth guard. A substantial adjustment of teeth alignment is not advised with this approach.
The part of your teeth that is exposed to your tongue is called the lingual surface. An additional type of invisible braces are lingual braces. With the exception of how they connect to the back edges of your teeth, they resemble conventional metal braces.
Not everyone should use lingual braces. They are costly and hard to clean. Additionally, they are not often advised for teeth that are significantly crooked or misaligned. These braces could be more difficult to get used to wearing and may take longer to start working.
Surgery To Straighten Teeth
Another method for straightening teeth is surgery. They could allow you to wear braces for a shorter period of time. Your orthodontist could advise a minor surgical procedure to straighten the bones and gums that support the retention of your teeth.
Additionally, they could advise a more invasive operation to straighten your jaw. Orthognathic surgery is the term use for this. If the position of your teeth has interfered with your ability to eat or speak, this kind of surgery could be suggested. The kind of operation you have, where you live, and your health insurance will all affect how much you’ll have to pay out-of-pocket for these procedures.
Both in kids and adults, crooked teeth are fairly prevalent and can negatively affect self-esteem. Genetics, birth deformities, face traumas, missing teeth, and early habits like thumb sucking are some of the causes of the disorder.
Always seek advice from a dentist, such as an orthodontist, who specialises in straightening up crowded, misaligned teeth.
The jaw may become misaligned as a result of facial injuries that involve a hit to the mouth. Additionally, this may result in misaligned teeth. In adults, tooth loss is another factor that contributes to crooked teeth because the remaining teeth have a tendency to move into the empty space left by the missing tooth and become misaligned.
Depending on how complicated your tooth alignment is, teeth straightening might take anywhere from 6 months to 24 months to complete. Typically, retainers must be worn for many hours each day for six months straight.
Children and adults alike frequently have crooked or mismatched teeth. If they are not having problems with their self-esteem, many people decide against getting their teeth straightened. A visit to the orthodontist wouldn’t harm, though, if the extreme case of crooked teeth was to have an impact on your general health.