You want straight teeth. . . in fact, you’ve been thinking about getting Invisalign for ages, but you’re just having trouble justifying the investment in straightening out a few crooked teeth.
(If you follow me on Instagram, you may recognize the smile above. . .Sandy. . .my office manager, and her results from Invisalign treatment)
At The Center for Restorative & Cosmetic Dentistry, we want our Newport Beach Invisalign patients to know that there’s more to a straight smile than just feeling confident about the way you look. In reality, straightening your teeth and alignment of your overall bite can play a significant impact on the quality of your overall oral health.
Here are a few examples as to why straight teeth are important:
Crowded and crooked teeth are at a much higher risk of developing tooth decay than teeth that are properly aligned with one another. The tight contacts or areas where teeth are rotated tend to harbor more bacterial plaque and food debris; they’re also more challenging to keep clean.
If you find that you tend to get cavities in the same few teeth each time, and it involves ones that are crooked or misaligned, then getting braces or a removable aligner system could help you to lower your risk of new tooth decay.
Improved Gum Health
As with cavities, crooked and rotated teeth tend to be the first ones to develop periodontal disease. Even with adequate brushing and flossing, bacteria tend to collect in these locations first, irritating the gums and causing infection. Your X-rays may even show signs of bone loss between misaligned teeth.
Gum health experts recommend orthodontic therapy as part of a comprehensive treatment plan for patients struggling with periodontal disease. Straight teeth really do make a difference!
Invisalign takes it a step further, eliminating the need for fixed brackets and wires because the aligners are removable. This makes your daily home hygiene routine that much easier and effective. There’s no need for extra tools or aids to clean around appliances; all you need is your toothbrush and floss. Even your dental cleanings at our Newport Beach dentist office will be easier!
Lessen the Risk of TMJ Disorder (TMD)
Temporomandibular joint disorder (“TMD” or “TMJ disorder”) is painful condition that causes discomfort in the jaws, popping, clicking, or limited range of motion. All of which can make things like eating or talking quite uncomfortable.
But TMD symptoms may be due to something outside of the joint itself, and rather how the TMJ is moving and functioning throughout the day that’s causing the problem.
For example, if you have misaligned teeth where the upper and lower arches do not close together properly, your jaw may need to accommodate this atypical relationship by modifying the way you bite and chew into food. These tiny movements — when repeated hundreds of times a day — start to cause overall strain to the TMJ. With time, the joint may even suffer from internal damage along with experiencing chronic pain and fatigue.
By correcting the way the upper and lower teeth close together, you can provide your TMJ with the opportunity to function efficiently and smoothly. No longer will it need to stretch or strain (even fractions of a centimeter) in odd directions to chew your food. Naturally, you encourage healthier joint movement and eliminate a major cause of TMD.
Avoid Worn, Flat Teeth
Malocclusion (misaligned biting relationships) cause excessive amounts of pressure to be placed at key points throughout the mouth, rather than evenly distributed. This means certain teeth bear the weight of the bite even more than nature had intended.
Over time, all of that extra pressure will cause the enamel to start to wear down or chip away. Yes, enamel is the hardest substance in the entire body, but even a strong tooth can’t withstand more pressure than it was designed for. Gradually, the teeth start to look flatter or develop sharp edges along their biting surfaces, making certain ones appear lopsided or shorter than they used to be.
On a similar note, any investments you’ve made in restorative treatments or cosmetic dentistry — such as porcelain veneers or crowns — will also succumb to the uneven biting forces. As teeth wear down, so will the dental work that you’ve invested in. Those restorations can’t be patched over but will need to be replaced entirely.
“I’m Too Old for Braces”
You’re never too old to enjoy a straight teeth and a straighter smile! One of the great things about Invisalign is that it’s designed for adults and working professionals who want to enjoy healthier teeth without the traditional look of fixed metal braces.
Plus, the removable aligners require fewer and shorter appointments than what you would need with conventional orthodontics. You can even whiten your teeth at the same time, giving yourself a “mini smile makeover” while enhancing your oral health.
Are you starting to see the side effects of a misaligned bite? Having trouble keeping an area of your mouth from constantly developing gum infections? Schedule an exam at The Center for Restorative & Cosmetic Dentistry today to find out if Invisalign with Dr. Yazdan is right for you!