Many people wrongly believe that orthodontic treatment is just carried out to help those with misaligned teeth.
The truth is that braces can be used to remedy a number of different dental issues. You may be suffering from one of these problems and not even realise that orthodontic treatment is an option open to you.
We’ve compiled five popular reasons that patients choose to have orthodontic treatment to help you discover if braces could be the answer for you.
Teeth which are overcrowded within your mouth can have a number of causes. Sometimes it can be as a result of mouth trauma, but more often it is simply a genetic issue passed down to you where your jaw is simply too small to house all your teeth comfortably. Crowded teeth can lead to a number of issues, including increased likelihood of gum disease, mouth ulcers and jaw strain. It’s an issue that historically was treated through tooth removal, but this is only necessary in extreme cases today.
Spacing between teeth
At the other end of the spectrum to crowding, a gap between two teeth (known as a diastema) also has a number of causes. The most common reasons for diastemata are missing teeth, abnormally small teeth or poor dental and oral hygiene in the past. Problems caused by diastemata include an increased likelihood of gum disease and the possibility of teeth becoming loose more easily. Thankfully, gaps between your teeth can usually be closed straightforwardly through orthodontic treatment.
An overbite is caused by the upper front teeth extending out over the lower front teeth. Whilst a very slight overbite is usually not something to worry about either medically or aesthetically, when the problem is more pronounced it can lead to further issues. Your overbite may lead to excessive wear on your tooth enamel, jaw pain, potential damage to the roof of your mouth and even a speech impediment. Braces are regularly used to successfully remedy overbites.
An underbite is the counterpart to an overbite, in that the lower front teeth extending over the upper front teeth. It’s a lot less common than an overbite and is almost always hereditary, being caused by an oversized lower jaw or smaller-than-usual upper jaw. The issues caused by an underbite include eating difficulties, speech problems, jaw pain, excessive enamel wear and breathing difficulties including snoring and sleep apnoea. Orthodontic treatment is normally effective.
Often either confused with – or believed to be the same as – an overbite, an overjet is where the upper front teeth are at an angle as to make them protrude over the lower teeth. Overjets can cause problems with properly biting and chewing food, as well as potentially resulting in speech issues. As the teeth are protruding further out than normal, they are also more prone to damage and injury. Braces are regularly able to remedy an overjet.
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