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Malocclusion: The causes and treatment for crooked teeth

5th November 2019

Your smile is often the first thing people notice about you and it can play a big part in creating a positive lasting first impression. A great smile can help you feel more attractive and confident, which is why so many people aspire to have straight and pearly white teeth. So it’s no surprise that most of these people, including teenagers and adults will experience crooked teeth at some point or another and will seek treatment to have straighter teeth. But what causes crooked teeth? What effect does it really have on your mouth and what solutions are there? Let’s find out.

 

Causes of crooked teeth

Crooked teeth also known as malocclusion (misaligned teeth) can affect both children and adults and there are many reasons as to why they can become misaligned. Let’s take a look at some of the most common causes of crooked teeth.

 

Genetics

It’s possible that if your parents had crowded or crooked teeth that you will too. Factors that affect the way teeth are arranged includes the number and size of teeth, the size of the jaw, how the teeth fit when you chew and where they sit between your lips and tongue. Many of which have a genetic origin. So could have inherited your crowded or crooked teeth from your parents.

 

Missing teeth

Losing your baby teeth or adult teeth can affect the position and movement of your remaining teeth. The empty gap can allow them to drift in to the available space. This can occur when a baby tooth is replaced by a larger adult tooth that is too big for the available space causing crowding and overlap with the other teeth.

 

Thumb sucking

Environmental factors and habits such as thumb sucking can affect the positioning of your teeth. The sucking motion can force the teeth to move in a different direction. This can result in an open bite or gap between where the top and bottom teeth meet. If you have children, it’s best to try and encourage them to stop.

 

Poor dental care

Problems such as gum disease and cavities can affect the alignment of your teeth so it’s imperative that you stay on top of your dental health and have a check up with your dentist at least once a year. Gum disease can affect the overall health of your mouth and teeth could become loose and change their positioning.

 

Injury

If you suffer from an injury to the face then this could force your teeth to move and become misaligned. A serious trauma could also affect the gums and jaw, which could also cause the teeth to shift. When taking part in any contact sport it’s best to wear a mouth guard to protect your teeth from potential damage.

 

Not wearing your retainer

A common cause of crooked teeth is due to people not wearing their retainers after having metal braces at a younger age. It’s important that you follow the instructions given by your dentists regarding your retainer. You need to keep wearing the retainer in order for your teeth to stay straight.

 

Nutrition

Poor nutrition especially in children can lead to tooth decay, which may affect the positioning of the teeth. Tooth decay caused by bad nutrition can put pressure on the teeth and gums causing them to be misaligned. A healthy mouth is a happy mouth so it’s important that you look after your teeth and one way to do this is by eating a healthy diet.

 

Issues caused by crooked teeth 

In some instances crooked teeth can affect your quality of life. For example, for some people their crooked teeth can really affect their confidence and self esteem causing them to refrain from smiling and avoiding social situations. Here are some of the other health issues that crooked teeth can cause.

 

Periodontal disease

It can be difficult to clean in between crooked teeth, and could cause food debris and plaque to be left behind. If not cleaned this may result in tooth decay and gum disease. If not properly treated, gum disease may lead to periodontitis, which is a much more serious infection affecting the teeth and bones.

 

Chewing

Crooked teeth could affect how you chew your food, which could then affect your digestion. Your teeth play a crucial part in the digestion of food. Your teeth and saliva are needed to break down food so that when it reaches your stomach it is able to get the nutrients it needs.

 

Excess wear

Misaligned teeth can cause excess wear and tear on your teeth, gums and jaw. This can result in cracked teeth, jaw strain and chronic headaches. Teeth that are too close together are at risk of wearing away the enamel of the teeth, which can lead to other dental hygiene issues.

 

Speech difficulty

If your teeth are misaligned it could affect the way you articulate sounds and pronounce certain words. Having difficulty with your speech due to misaligned teeth could make you feel quite self conscious when talking to people. 

 

How to fix misaligned teeth

If you think you’re suffering from malocclusion and its affecting bothy our physical and mental health, then not to worry because we have the perfect solution – Invisalign. Invisalign ‘invisible’ braces are a discreet and comfortable option to straighten teeth. They are completely removable so you can remove for eating, cleaning and flossing or even special occasions. The custom-made aligners fit comfortably in your mouth without the need for wires like conventional braces. The clear aligners are changed every two weeks to move teeth into the desired position. Once your invisalign treatment is complete you will be provided with a clear retainer to wear every night when you go to sleep. Most people require adult braces because they didn’t wear their retainer after their metal brace was removed and their teeth have since shifted so it’s incredibly important to wear the retainer every single night to prevent the teeth from moving back.

Each person’s teeth are very different, therefore we will need to undertake an Invisalign eligibility assessment to assess if your teeth are suitable for Invisalign invisible braces.

So, if you are interested in a straighter smile, give us a call on 01709 917 666 and book your FREE Invisalign consultation today.

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