Why are crooked teeth a problem?

by Core Dental Group
crooked teeth

Many Australians have crooked teeth, also known as malocclusion. Common types of misaligned teeth include crowding, spacing, deep bite, open bite, crossbite, excessive overbite, and edge-to-edge bite.

Crooked teeth can affect your periodontal (gum) health, because it is difficult to remove plaque and bacteria from crowded areas. Bacteria that are not properly removed will multiply and might trigger periodontal disease, which begins as gum inflammation, redness, and bleeding while brushing and flossing. If left untreated, gum inflammation is likely to progress over time and cause chronic infection, soft tissue damage, receding gums, periodontal pockets, bone loss and eventually tooth loss. These conditions can require painful repair and maintenance, possibly incurring thousands of dollars in expense and countless hours in the dentist’s chair.

At their worst, trapped bacteria can invade blood vessels, causing damage to the cells that line your coronary arteries and thereby increasing your risk for heart disease, stroke and other illness.

Crooked teeth can also affect your bite, placing teeth under undue pressure and thus causing chipping and notches at the gum line. In time, the excessive force may also flatten the teeth or wear them down, as well as causing chipping and fractures at the edges of the teeth. This premature wear can lead to gum recession, poor bone support at the roots, loose teeth, and (eventually) tooth loss. In addition, a bad bite may exert forces on the jaw joint that can lead to pain in the jaw, earache and even headaches.

Correctly positioning your teeth for proper alignment and function will help prevent future dental problems and make a significant contribution to keeping your teeth for life and maintaining a healthy mouth and body.

All problems in the oral cavity are best treated in the early stages. Ask today about Invisalign, a series of clear aligners that are custom-made to gradually align your teeth, and start on the road to a healthier you.

Are these your teeth?

A confident smile and increased self-esteem aren’t the only benefits to be had from enhancing your smile with Invisalign – your oral health will also benefit. Learn more about several common irregularities that our orthodontists can work with you to correct.

Crowding

This occurs when there’s insufficient room for all of your teeth to fit normally within your jaw structure. If left untreated, overcrowding can increase the chance of gum disease because your teeth are harder to clean and it can impede the normal functioning of your teeth.

Spacing

This happens when there’s too much room in your jaw structure for the number of teeth. This could be due to having unusually small teeth, abnormal growth of the jaw ones, genetics, tongue protrusion or missing teeth. When teeth are missing, the other teeth sometimes drift into the available space. Excessive spacing can lead to some periodontal diseases – including gingivitis and periodontics – which, if left untreated, can lead to tooth loss.

Crossbite

This is, when the upper and lower jaws are misaligned. It usually causes one or more upper teeth to bite on the inside of the lower teeth and can happen at both the front and the sides of the mouth. It can cause excessive wear of the teeth, gum disease and bone loss.

Overbite

This is when the upper teeth significantly overlap with the lower teeth. It is typically caused by genetic inheritance, bad oral habits, or overdevelopment of the bone that supports the teeth. This irregularity can lead to gum irritation or other problems, wear on the lower teeth, and jaw and joint pain.

Underbite

This is when the front lower teeth protrude past the front upper teeth, usually caused by undergrowth of the upper jaw, overgrowth of the lower jaw or both. An underbite can prevent the normal function of front teeth or molars, which can lead to tooth wear. It can also cause painful jaw and joint problems.