For most people, having straight teeth is all about achieving a beautiful smile and generally a better appearance. While there is no problem with that, it is important to understand that straightening your teeth goes beyond these superficial reasons; it can help improve your oral health, prevent a range of medical issues, and boost your confidence.
When your teeth don’t align properly, the resulting condition is known as malocclusion, and it occurs in several forms. Essentially, it affects the way the teeth come together when you bite. As a common dental problem, misaligned and crooked teeth can have undesirable effects if left untreated.
That said, here are the health benefits of having your teeth straightened:
Help you avoid periodontal disease
Periodontal disease occurs when you are unable to maintain oral hygiene, which is difficult to achieve with misaligned teeth. With crooked teeth, it may prove challenging to clean and remove bacteria in certain areas, and this creates ground for infections. The prominent symptoms of periodontal disease are redness and tenderness in gums and bleeding when you brush.
Besides gum and teeth, periodontal disease can also affect the alveolar bone and periodontal ligament. If not checked early enough, the gums can begin to recede and eventually, tooth loss can occur. Orthodontic treatment is an ideal way to keep periodontal disease and resulting issues at bay.
Reduces the risk of jaw issues
Many jaw problems can be attributed to misaligned teeth: crooked teeth stress the temporal mandibular joints (the joints that connect the jaw to the skull near the ears), which can lead to jaw pain, dizziness, headaches, earaches, and ringing in the ears. With these problems, you cannot eat well or even lead your life normally.
Orthodontic treatment goes a long way in alleviating jaw problems. In fact, people dealing with constant jaw pain and headaches can benefit greatly from teeth straightening treatments and even solve issues they couldn’t tell were a result of misaligned teeth.
Reduces the risk of dental injury
Crooked teeth are more susceptible to cracking, chipping, and breaking in case of an accident. Similarly, if your teeth protrude from your mouth, you are more at risk of suffering mouth injuries when you trip, or when you bite into very solid food. It’s also harder to ensure proper dental hygiene, which can weaken your teeth and make it easier to crack or break them.
Injuries can also occur from biting your cheeks and tongue, and this could cause painful sores and even infections. Having straight teeth can save you from dental injuries because they are less likely to crack, chip or break.
Eliminates teeth grinding
With misaligned teeth, your top and bottom teeth do not rest against each other perfectly. As a result, you find yourself grinding your teeth together, which causes your enamel to wear. In addition to worn tooth enamel, you can experience tired or tight jaw muscles, increased tooth sensitivity, soreness in the jaw, face, and neck, fractured teeth, and dull headaches.
Teeth straightening treatments can help to keep your teeth from grinding together, which further protects your enamel from wear and other health issues.
Prevents the development of sleep apnea
Sleep apnea is a condition where an individual experiences frequent breathing problems when sleeping due to tooth misalignment, dental arch issues, or jaw misalignment. Besides disrupting your sleep, this disorder can lead to high blood pressure, stroke, heart attacks, and depression.
Orthodontic treatment can help cure sleep apnea by aligning your teeth to ensure you are able to breathe properly. Accordingly, your sleep will improve, and even better, you will keep associated health problems away.
Protects your overall health
Straightening your teeth and improving your dental hygiene is a sure way to boost your overall health. Remember that an infection that starts in your mouth can spread to the rest of the body, including the heart, consequently compromising your health. Therefore, orthodontic treatment is not only about your oral hygiene but your overall health.
Clearly, having straight teeth is important for good health. If you happen to have misaligned teeth, orthodontic treatment can go a long way in improving your dental health, boosting your confidence, and helping you lead a happy and fulfilling life.