Many people choose to improve dental alignment for primarily aesthetic reasons—and this makes so much sense! A straight, even smile looks attractive and healthy.
However, our Elmhurst cosmetic dentists are here to talk about the ways that orthodontic treatment can actually benefit the health of your smile, as well as your appearance.
Orthodontic treatment moves your existing teeth into better positions. In doing so, our team is able to correct a number of common bite issues, like:
Overbite: this occurs when your top teeth jut out too far beyond your bottom teeth. This can hamper chewing and biting, as well as affect speech clarity.
Underbite: when your lower jaw sticks out far enough to extend beyond your top teeth, you have an underbite. Many patients dislike the aesthetics of an underbite and develop chewing abnormalities to compensate for the bite’s irregularity.
Crossbite: some people have a few top teeth that extend beyond the bottom teeth, and a few that sit behind the bottom teeth—this is a crossbite. Patients with crossbites may find it difficult to bite and chew comfortably, because dental enamel from top and bottom teeth rub together.
If these dental alignment issues are left untreated, you will be at a greater risk of developing:
TMJ problems: your temporomandibular joints, or TMJs, connect your lower jaw to your skull. An uneven bite puts pressure on these joints, because you are forced to alter the way that you chew day to day.
Worn-down enamel: as you shift your bite, certain teeth will rub against each other more often than they should. Unfortunately, this causes enamel to wear down and become thin and weak.
Increased instances of cracked and chipped enamel: as you would imagine, compromised enamel is more prone than healthy enamel to developing cavities as well as tooth damage. Correcting functional dental problems in a timely manner will help you avoid unnecessary damage in the future.
If you don’t feel like your bite is coming together comfortably and evenly, please discuss this with your dental team. Our Elmhurst TMJ dentists are here to answer any questions that you have and to guide you through your treatment options. Give us a call to get started!