Orthodontics is the practice and profession of aligning the jaw and teeth correctly, so that they are working as efficiently as they possibly can.
If you have crooked teeth as a teenager, then it is more than likely that you will be subject to wearing braces, as this is one of the most beneficial times to address crooked teeth. Braces are introduced as early as possible, so that the teeth can be corrected as soon as they are developed.
Why are teeth crooked?
It is unknown exactly why teeth become crooked and it seems to be a natural progression of the teeth. Wisdom teeth are a marker of this, and in some parts of the world, 70% of the population suffer from impacted wisdom teeth.
This means the wisdom tooth does not erupt properly and can either stay inside the gum, or push out against other teeth, or in a crooked way.
Crooked teeth are mainly due to a lack of space, and for impacted wisdom teeth, this is evidently the case. It has been speculated that this is the result of our jaws shrinking as we evolve.
Our Neanderthal ancestors had more powerful jaws for more basic diets, but as our diets have become more refined, we have been slowly losing the need for third molars, and large jaws. This is one reason why teeth crowding, and wisdom teeth often prove troublesome.
Dangers of an impacted wisdom tooth
Impacted wisdom teeth can be dangerous, and above all else, extremely painful. Therefore, it is important that if you are experiencing any pain with your wisdom teeth to get them checked by a dentist straight away, as the pain could worsen.
Wisdom teeth erupting at incorrect angles can push into your second molars, which can also put them at risk. In this case, surgery is an option
Dangers of crooked teeth
Many people think that crooked teeth can simply be an aesthetic issue, however crooked teeth can have seriously detrimental effects on your oral health.
Teeth that are not correctly aligned can grind together when you chew, and even when you are sleeping. Grinding your teeth while you are sleeping is called bruxism and can have similar damaging effects to your teeth.
If the enamel is eroded from poor alignment, then this can weaken the teeth and make them sensitive, which can be uncomfortable and painful. Furthermore, the teeth being weakened can then make them more prone to cavities, as the enamel has been worn away.
Cosmetically, crooked teeth can be unsightly, and many studies have shown that a person’s smile is the first thing that is noticed about their appearance. If you are in a client or customer facing environment, then a great smile can have many unseen benefits.
Equally, a more positive outlook about yourself can have great effects on your mental health and overall well-being, which can have benefits on your physical health too.
Make sure to ask your dentist about straightening your teeth, and all the advantages that are carried with it.
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