Methods for Correcting Crooked Teeth
Many people are worried about their teeth being crooked or twisted. Parents also worry about their child’s teeth – will the teeth come in without any problems? Will my child need braces? These are common questions that many parents think about during the developmental years of their children.
Children may have crooked teeth, but this is nothing to be worried about. In today’s world, with the advancement in medicine and technology, there are many options to fix this dental problem.
What causes crooked teeth?
A variety of reasons have been mentioned as causing crooked teeth.
- Heredity – genes are known to play a hand in bringing out crooked teeth.
- Jaw development – during a child’s development, how the jaw bone or the palate develops affects the teeth development.
- Less space – sometimes the mouth is too small for the teeth and when they grow, they develop crookedly.
- Misaligned bite – this condition in which either of the jaws juts out when compared to the other.
- Habits – such as thumb sucking while young, or prolonged use of pacifiers.
- Dental diseases – some diseases of the gums would put pressure on the gums and teeth.
- Other causes – sometimes allergy or asthma can also affect how the jaw develops, when they develop incorrectly crooked teeth results.
Effects of crooked teeth
When one thinks about crooked teeth, the first thing that typically comes to one’s mind would be about the appearance. While, besides that, the health of a person is also affected by crooked teeth.
When teeth are crooked or twisted, it is difficult to clean them. Food particles can easily get stuck between them and when not cleaned properly they stay there. Bacteria act on these particles and can easily cause plaque/tartar. The consequences of this will be tooth decay and gum diseases.
As teeth do not have enough space, there is a lot of wear and tear. This puts enormous pressure on the teeth and one can notice chipped or cracked teeth.
Bad breath results because of crooked teeth. You are unable to clean between the teeth and bad breath comes from the odour of food particles left in the mouth and bacteria working on them.
If you have teeth which are misaligned, you would be suffering from overbite issues – this can cause difficulty in chewing food. This also can give extreme pain in the teeth, jaws etc.
Difficulty in chewing, being affected by bacterial infection etc. can also affect the overall health of a person. This can also lead to other medical conditions like diabetes or heart diseases.
How to correct crooked teeth?
Crooked teeth cannot be looked upon just as a dental problem. It will affect your overall health and bring on other medical conditions. So, it is important that this condition is set right at the earliest.
Braces can be used by children and adults alike. It uses pressure to realign crooked teeth. Traditional braces usually have small brackets held together with wires, dentists tighten the wire over time to get the desired shape. These brackets can be the same colour as your teeth, these days there are braces and bands in bright colours. In some braces, the brackets are placed behind the teeth.
In the case of children, dentists usually recommend starting on braces when they are in the ages 9-14. Adults can wear them as suggested by the dentist. Usually the treatment lasts for 3-4 years, which is when you would be getting the proper position for the teeth.
When you wear braces, care should be given on proper cleaning. The type of food that you can consume is also a bit restricted, you can check with your dentist on the type of food which is safe to use. If braces are not cleaned, an infection can result and this can lead to tooth decay.
Retainers are usually used after braces have been used. These help to keep the teeth in the desired position. Sometimes after braces are removed, the teeth would move from their aligned position. They are different types of retainers like fixed or movable ones. Depending on your need, the retainers would be decided. The time one would need to wear these retainers also varies according to individual needs.
Retainers usually are made of a single wire, which is held in place with a wire placed behind the lower teeth. There are some made of plastic and some which are glued to the back of the teeth. Retainers would be worn every day for the first few months and then later on only at night. Some have problems with speech when they wear the retainer, but this goes off after you get used to them.
Like all prosthetic devices, it is important to keep the retainers clean. Cleaning with toothbrush and paste is recommended. Some suggest cleaning it with mouth wash as well. You can check with your dentist on the procedure to clean retainers. If proper procedure is not followed, food debris can stick on to them and lead to gum diseases.
Correcting crooked teeth is also possible using dental veneers. Teeth which are crooked are prepared for the procedure and porcelain made veneers are placed over them. This helps to obtain beautiful teeth.
This procedure does not require too many dental visits, it can be done quickly. In one visit, the teeth can be prepared by scraping away a bit of dental enamel and then getting the correct fit for the veneer. The scraping of the enamel is done to make all the teeth be in the same size, otherwise some teeth which have veneers would jut out. Veneers are custom made to match the colour of your natural teeth. Cleaning dental veneers is also important. Brushing and flossing should be done as normal. Care should be taken to not apply too much pressure on the veneers.
Categorised in: Childrens Dentistry, Dental Quick Tips
This post was written by Letooth