The thing about crooked teeth is that they can affect patients of all ages. In children, the importance of addressing the condition is often more pronounced. If not corrected, their crooked teeth will continue to grow even further out of alignment, affecting many different aspects of their oral health. In adults, however, addressing crooked teeth is equally important, even though their teeth have already finished developing. Today, examine a few of the reasons why straightening crooked teeth is important at any age, and a few of the complications that can result when they’re ignored.
Tooth decay and gum disease
The most common dental health conditions, tooth decay and gum disease, stem from the most common threats to your teeth and gums – plaque and tartar. Harmful oral bacteria form plaque on your teeth every day, and the best way to protect your smile from their influence is to effectively brush and floss them away every day. If your teeth aren’t properly aligned, however, then cleaning your teeth effectively will be more difficult, perhaps even impossible. This means you’re more likely to develop tooth decay and/or gum disease until you straighten your teeth and make them easier to keep clean.
Teeth-grinding and damage
The alignment of your teeth impacts more than just their daily cleanliness. It also affects the ability of your bite to balance itself. Your teeth won’t meet each other properly when you close your bite, which means your jaw joints, muscles, and other oral structures will have to compensate when you bite, chew, speak, and more. Constant teeth-grinding, or bruxism, is a common symptom of this imbalance, and it can lead to excessive tooth wear and damage the worse it becomes.
TMJ disorder and discomfort
In addition to damage to your tooth structure, grinding your teeth and exposing them to excessive pressure from a bite imbalance can also lead to wear and damage on your jaw joints. Known as temporomandibular joints (TMJs), they’re located on either side of your jaw and are responsible for the movement of your mandible when you bite and chew. When your teeth are crooked, they can disrupt the balance that your TMJs rely on, causing damage, inflammation, and more in one or both of the joints.
Improve your smile with orthodontic treatment
When your teeth are crooked, there are several things that your smile may be more at-risk of experiencing. Fortunately, you can alleviate most of the risks by straightening your teeth with orthodontic treatment. For more information, schedule a consultation by calling Lake Country Orthodontics in Fort Worth, TX today at (817) 236-7846.