Tooth Alignment & How it Effects Overall Oral Health
Very few people have perfect teeth, but many tooth alignment problems are typically minor and can be corrected using Invisalign. Such teeth issues are often discovered at a routine dental cleaning and, depending on the severity of the issue, may be referred to an orthodontist.
However, more severe problems can also arise. Here's a look at some common teeth alignment problems, how they arise, and what can be done about them.
Malocclusion is the number one reason why dental patients are referred to orthodontists. While the issue is mainly hereditary, it can also be caused by poor childhood habits (such as thumb sucking and prolonged pacifier use), jaw injury, mouth or jaw tumors, and impacted teeth.
The goal of any type of malocclusion treatment is to not only correct the positioning of the teeth but make them easier to clean. It also aims to eliminate strain on the teeth, jaw, and muscles.
Invisalign treatment and orthodontic braces are the most common ways to treat alignment issues. Tooth extraction, tooth repair, and, in extreme cases, jaw surgery are also ways to treat more severe cases of malocclusion.
Crowded teeth is the common culprit behind crooked teeth. And crooked teeth don't just impact your smile. They also can cause issues with chewing, make proper teeth cleaning more difficult, and strain jaw muscles. Additional symptoms can include:
- Abnormal teeth alignment
- Abnormal facial appearance
- Discomfort when chewing or biting
- Speech impediment
- Increased tooth decay
Crooked teeth are often diagnosed very early on by your dentist, since it's customary to take dental X-rays routinely to monitor how teeth are developing. If the issue is severe enough, we'll refer you to an orthodontist, but often Dr. Smith can treat these cases with Invisalign.
For more information on alignment problems and to schedule an appointment today, contact us at 803-359-6143. We offer the friendly service and the professionalism to handle and treat even the most difficult dental issues.