Teeth can become crooked, crowded, and misaligned for many reasons. Some causes are due to bad habits while others are due to factors beyond our control, such as genetics. Whatever the reason you or your child may have crooked teeth, you may be wondering how to fix them. Read on for a guide on how to fix crooked teeth, including the reasons that crooked teeth form and the treatment options available to you to get a beautifully straight smile.
Want to find out if you or your child needs braces? Visit Reese Orthodontics in Charleston, SC for leading orthodontic care.
What are Crooked Teeth?
Crooked teeth can also be described as twisted, rotated, crowded, or misaligned. They can occur in young people whose teeth just came in or old people whose teeth have moved over time. Crowded teeth are most prominent on the top row, whereas crookedness results in teeth that stick out, overlap, point outwards or jut back. However, crooked teeth are also common on the lower jaw, producing similar results.
Complications of Crooked Teeth
Many people think that crooked teeth are merely a cosmetic issue. If they don’t have confidence issues or a job that involves meeting people, they may neglect to have their crooked teeth corrected. However, oral health issues can crop up due to crooked teeth.
Since crooked teeth contain more crevices and make it more difficult to floss and brush, they can cause long-term issues with hygiene. Cavities can form more easily, leading to tooth decay, gum problems, and more. Teeth that are crooked and misaligned can also experience excess wear, leading to problems with jaw muscles, joints, enamel damage, and more. Speech difficulties can also result from crookedness.
Causes of Crooked Teeth
Crooked teeth can be caused by factors both in and out of our control. Here are the main reasons teeth can become crooked:
- Natural formation. Permanent teeth can simply come in crooked when they are too small for the gums. Note that baby teeth can be crooked as well. Parents should keep in mind that crooked baby teeth do not cause crooked permanent teeth. However, crowding caused by spacing issues may affect both sets of teeth.
- Mouth trauma at a young age that prematurely knocks out baby teeth can cause permanent teeth to grow slanted and crooked.
- Jaw size. The size of the jaw can also affect straightness. Over time, our jaws have become smaller due to less carnivorous habits. We eat pudding instead of mammoths. Shorter, smaller jaws may be responsible for increasing instances of crooked teeth.
- Childhood habits. Childhood habits like excessive thumb-sucking or pacifiers can also lead to crooked teeth by changing the shape of the palette.
- Over/underbite. In cases of overbite and underbite, teeth can become misaligned over time. This is called “malocclusion.”
- Poor nutrition can also cause teeth to become crooked, especially if decay is indicated.
- Genetics can impact teeth straightness. You can even inherit a malocclusion like an overbite from one or both of your parents.
How to Fix Crooked Teeth
There are a few options to fix crooked teeth, including:
- Traditional Braces. The primary method for fixing crooked teeth is braces. Braces can be supplemented with other devices such as headgear or a Herbst appliance to correct jaw issues as well. Braces can fix even complex dental issues related to crooked teeth.
- Invisalign. Invisalign is a more expensive treatment than conventional braces. However, invisible braces are more discreet and can be removed to eat and brush. They cannot fix the most severe alignment issues, but they could be a viable option for adults that want a subtler treatment.
- Oral Surgery. In the most extreme cases, teeth-straightening surgery may be indicated. It can reduce the time that braces are necessary and correct structural jaw problems that cause teeth to become misaligned. Due to expenses, this is usually only recommended for patients whose crooked teeth are so severe that they affect their speaking and eating habits.
Choose Reese Orthodontics
If you are considering braces for you or your child, you need professional advice on your treatment and payment options. For orthodontic treatments in Charleston, SC, Reese Orthodontics offers the latest technology and treatment plans. Our advanced and comfortable orthodontic treatments can be customized to suit your needs. A consultation with Reese Orthodontics includes scans, a comprehensive exam, and a conversation with the orthodontist to discover which treatment options are right for you.
Schedule an appointment with us today to stay ahead of your oral health and receive the best possible treatment in your area.