Crooked teeth come in many different forms. Most of the time crooked teeth are genetic, and they’re correlated to the size of your jaw. Other times, your teeth can become crooked from losing your baby teeth too early, poorly done cavity fillings, gum disease, jaw injury from trauma, too much thumb sucking as a child, and even tumors in the mouth. Whether you have an underbite, overbite, or just a mouth full of teeth that grew in sideways, it’s never too late to treat your teeth with Invisalign.
At this point, we’ve talked about the benefits of Invisalign in comparison to traditional braces. You might be wondering, “why do I need braces at all? I’m happy with the way my teeth look.” The truth is that even if you’re cosmetically happy with having crooked teeth, they could be harming your quality of life. This is Dr. Stephen Grussmark in Brickell, FL, and today, we’re going to discuss all of the ways that straight teeth can change your life for the better.
While having straight teeth has countless benefits, here are some of the primary ones:
- More clean. When your teeth are crooked or you have a crossbite (when the back teeth of your upper and lower jaw are misaligned with one another), it’s incredibly difficult to keep your teeth clean. Plaque builds up between your teeth easier, and the crooked nature of your teeth traps food and makes it hard to floss out. Trapped food and plaque in your teeth are directly correlated to gum disease and tooth decay. Keep your teeth clean and avoid gum disease by straightening out those crooked choppers.
- Better digestion. Speaking of choppers, having crooked teeth can make it more difficult to effectively chop your food. When you don’t chew your food well enough, it can lead to stomach problems. Improperly chewing your food leads to acid reflux. Acid reflux is a disorder that causes partially digest food or liquid to come back up your stomach and into your mouth. Besides damaging your throat and esophagus, acid reflux can also rot your teeth. When it coats your teeth, the acid from your stomach destroys your tooth’s enamel. Not to mention, if you’re suffering from acid reflux, you usually pop a few Tums or Pepcid AC. These medicines are known to dry out your mouth, which increases the likelihood that you’ll get cavities and decay. Not chewing your food properly can also make it harder to digest the nutrients in your food, which can lead to malnutrition. This is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to problems that can arise from not chewing your food correctly.
- Less likely to get in accidents. In the case of an accident, straight teeth are less likely to chip and break, because your bite will close evenly. When your teeth jut out, they’re more likely to break during traumas. Even something as simple as accidentally gnashing your upper and lower jaw together too hard can lead to chips and breaks. Not to mention, mouth guards don’t typically fit improper bites correctly, making them less effective. So, if you’re planning on participating in active contact sports that require a mouth guard, you might want to straighten your teeth beforehand.
- Better speech. Crooked teeth are a common cause of speech impediments. Having misaligned teeth leads to obvious lisps or whistling while talking. Speech problems can be incredibly off-putting for the listener and hinder your ability to speak confidently in professional and even friendly conversations. When your speech impediment causes complete mispronunciations of words, it can make it difficult for others to understand what you’re trying to say. Treat your crooked teeth and get back on track to speaking and enunciating your words with charm.
- Fewer headaches. When your jawline is crowded, your bite is more likely to wear unevenly. When your teeth wear unevenly, it can put extra stress on your jaw, which is a common cause of headaches. Jaw problems like TMJD, which is typically caused by an uneven bite or teeth grinding, creates pain in the face, neck, and head. TMJD is also a common cause of severe headaches and migraines. Fixing all of those stress headaches could be as simple as fixing your jaw alignment.
- Increased self-esteem. While increased self-esteem isn’t directly a physical health benefit, it can still lead to a better quality of life. When you feel comfortable flashing your smile, you’ll be able to speak and act charismatically in all of your social situations. Smiling more often creates a chemical chain reaction in the brain that releases the neurotransmitter dopamine, which in turn makes the person smiling happier. You’ll be doing your overall health and well-being a favor by smiling more often.
Overall, straight teeth will keep your dental and physical health in better shape. With straight teeth, you can relax knowing that you’re not putting your jaw and teeth under unnecessary stress. Even if you’ve gone your whole life with crooked teeth, as you age and your mouth grows, your teeth are likely to shift even more. You’re never for straight teeth, and fixing these shifts can be easy with Invisalign.