Bracing-For More Than Just a Pretty Smile

Q: 

    Most of my daughters friends have braces right now. My daughters teeth are just slightly crooked, but she wants braces to be just like her friends. Is there any harm in not doing braces since her teeth are not very crooked?

 

A: 

    What a great question!  Although it is difficult to answer specifically for your daughter's situation without seeing her teeth- I can discuss a few of the good reasons to have straight teeth.  

 

    *Teeth that are crowded or rotated are difficult to clean. Plaque tends to accumulate easier in areas where teeth are overlapped and it is sometimes difficult to get a toothbrush or floss into those areas for cleaning. 

    *If plaque is allowed to accumulate and not removed regularly it can lead to cavities and even gum disease.

    *Misaligned teeth can lead to issues with the way the teeth fit together. Over time this can lead to fractured teeth, gum recession, and issues with the jaw joint. 

    *Having crowded or misaligned teeth can contribute to self esteem issues. 

 

Most dentists will recommend an orthodontic consultation for children between the ages of 7-10. This way the orthodontist can do a thorough evaluation and recommend treatment based on best timing with tooth eruption and the child's growth pattern.  Straightening children's teeth early can help prevent some of the issues of having crooked teeth from ever occurring. 

 

If you're an adult and have crowded, rotated, or misaligned teeth you should still consider orthodontics!  It could help prevent future functional concerns with your teeth!  

 

Once finished with orthodontics your teeth should fit together properly, be easy to clean, and as a bonus give you a beautiful smile!  

 

If you have more questions about Orthodontics be sure and talk to your dentist, hygienist, or orthodontist!