An orthodontist is a dental specialist who offers treatments for dental and facial irregularities. Orthodontists receive an additional three years of training, mainly on tooth and jaw alignment.
Because of their ongoing growth, many people think that only children and teenagers need orthodontic treatments. However, people of all ages should regularly visit orthodontists to improve overall facial aesthetics and enjoy long-term dental health.
Regular visits help with timely diagnosis and treatment of dental and facial irregularities, reduce treatment costs, and lower emergency visits. Also, an orthodontist evaluation should be made at the first sign of any dental or facial deformity.
Orthodontists provide specialized treatments to address specific functional and aesthetic reasons for dental problems.
They can identify, prevent, and treat dental and facial anomalies. With that said, this article discusses the top reasons to visit an orthodontist.
Reasons You Should Visit an Orthodontist
1. Misaligned Teeth
Teeth imperfectly positioned or aligned within the dental arch are misaligned teeth. Teeth misalignment can cause multiple problems says this dentist who does orthodontics and dental implants in Redwood City CA. It can lead to difficulties in eating and chewing and, in severe cases, cause breathing problems.
Misalignment of teeth is a prevailing problem, and seeing people, especially kids and teens, with braces and aligners is a common sight.
Orthodontists use special orthodontic appliances, like braces and aligners, to correct and fix misaligned teeth.
Braces are special fixed devices that apply a constant and controlled pressure on teeth. It helps align and straighten the teeth to gradually move them to the desired position.
Aligners provide a more convenient and removable option to correct and fix misaligned teeth. Aligners are usually made with clear plastic and apply constant pressure to move teeth in small increments.
Make an appointment with an expert orthodontist if you face a misaligned teeth problem. So, you can search for top-rated orthodontics near me to find an orthodontist that you can conveniently visit for ongoing checkups. Almost all orthodontic treatments need multiple visits and follow-ups.
2. Bite Problems
Bite problems or malocclusions are issues with the alignment or positioning of upper and lower teeth when they meet. Bite problems can affect a person’s face shape and other physical issues.
Common issues associated with bite problems are teeth grinding, clenching, headaches, muscle tension, facial imbalance, and speech difficulties.
There are four types of bite problems: overbite, underbite, crossbite, and openbite.
An overbite is a malocclusion that happens when the upper front teeth overlap the lower front teeth. Untreated overbite problems can be a potential reason for gum disease, tooth decay, and temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorders.
An underbite is the opposite of an overbite issue. It occurs when your lower teeth overlap the upper front teeth. Underbites affect the bottom of the mouth and can cause speech difficulties, tooth wear, and jaw joint problems.
Crossbite is a bite problem when the upper and lower teeth don’t bite in the correct position. Crossbite can result from the misaligned position of the jaw, tooth, or both. Unfixed crossbite problems can result in pain, jaw damage, and arthritis.
Openbite is a malocclusion that occurs when a person’s upper and lower teeth do not make contact. Openbite problem results in a visual gap between upper and lower teeth. It can affect appearance and can cause speaking and chewing problems.
Orthodontists offer multiple treatments to treat bite issues depending on the severity of the problem. Standard treatment methods include braces, aligners, and jaw surgery for extreme cases.
3. Overcrowded Teeth
Overcrowded teeth or dental crowding is another common problem faced by people of all ages, especially teens and adults. Insufficient space within the dental arch is the main reason behind this dental issue.
Overcrowding results in misaligned, rotated, or overlapping teeth. It can occur in the upper and lower jaw and affects more than one mouth area.
The causes of overcrowded teeth can be genetic, as many families have a history of smaller jaws. Congenital disabilities, like hypoventilation and cleft palate, can also be the reason for dental overcrowding.
Orthodontists can offer specific orthodontic treatments to address the overcrowding. The options can be braces, clear aligners, special orthodontic appliances, or tooth extraction in some cases.
4. Jaw Misalignment
Jaw misalignment is a condition that occurs when your upper and lower teeth do not align when you close your mouth.
Misalignment of the jaws can lead to several dental issues, like jaw pain, chewing or eating problems, sleep disorders, headaches, and temporomandibular disorder or TMD.
Expert orthodontists offer customized treatments and devices for treating misaligned jaws according to the individual’s needs. Other treatment options include braces, clear aligners, orthodontic surgery, headgear, and palatal expanders.
5. Facial Imbalance
Facial imbalance is when facial traits do not mirror perfectly on both sides of the face. Many dental problems can contribute to facial imbalance or facial asymmetry.
Early tooth loss, missing teeth, and congenital dental issues can cause upper and lower teeth misalignment. It can hinder proper functionality of the jaws and mouth and adversely affect a person’s overall appearance.
6. Teeth Grinding
Teeth grinding or bruxism is when individuals grind, clench, or gnash their teeth involuntarily, mostly during sleep.
Common reasons for grinding teeth are stress, anxiety, and malocclusion. Excessive consumption of caffeine or drugs can also contribute to worsening this problem.
Teeth grinding can cause many overall and oral health issues like headaches, sore gums, sleep disorders, and even tooth decay in severe cases.
Seek medical advice if you are experiencing any of these problems. Orthodontists can address these issues through medication, therapies, mouthguards, relaxation techniques, and lifestyle modifications.
7. Speech or Eating Difficulties
Many speech and eating anomalies can be associated with misaligned teeth and bite problems.
Misaligned teeth can impact a person’s ability to produce certain sounds and pronounce words. It can result in speech disorders and reduced verbal communication.
Misaligned teeth and other dental deformities can also affect eating and chewing food. Misalignment of teeth and jaws can hinder chewing and grinding food.
With the advancement of modern techniques and devices in orthodontics, orthodontists offer different treatments to overcome these problems.
The treatments aim to improve speech ability, promote clarity, and facilitate effective chewing and eating.
Orthodontic treatment helps individuals improve their physical appearance and self-esteem. It can positively impact various aspects of life, improving confidence and overall health. Get an appointment with an expert orthodontist if you face any problems discussed above.
Early detection and treatment of orthodontic problems can significantly lower the treatment cost and produce better results. You can enjoy excellent oral health and a beautiful smile for years with the right orthodontic treatments and devices.