Because most people weren’t born with perfectly aligned teeth, it’s not uncommon to receive a recommendation from a dentist or hygienist to get braces.
For many patients, this can come off as offensive, leaving them thinking, “Why are they judging the appearance of my teeth?”
Fortunately, there are in fact valid reasons why dentists suggest braces to their patients.
A misaligned jaw/unbalanced bite
For one, you may be receiving a recommendation primarily because of a misaligned jaw which can be realigned with specific wearable devices provided from an orthodontist, typically attached to metal braces in more minor cases.
The problem with an unbalanced bite is that your gums could recede, and your oral bones can deteriorate overtime as a crooked mouth is applying pressure in all the wrong places in your teeth when you eat and speak, for instance.
This could also cause bleeding gums, problems with eating, enamel deterioration, and many jaw-related problems.
If you’ve noticed your dentist feeling your jaw and testing the bite of your teeth, this is a way for them to inform you whether or not you have a misaligned jaw that requires attention.
Whether you have spacing in your mouth due to missing teeth, small teeth, or due to another problem, oral spacing can be problematic, however, correctable with braces.
If left untreated, spacing could cause jaw problems, discomfort when eating, and even cause teeth to become loose, especially in severe cases where the patient consistently does what is known as a “tongue thrust” between the spaces of their teeth.
In minor cases of spacing between the teeth, these make for the perfect spaces for pieces of food to become stuck within, in turn, increasing the chances of cavities developing as decaying pieces of food within the teeth are the perfect snack for cavity-causing bacteria.
Minor cases such as this, though, are typically not in need of correction as long as sufficient oral hygienic methods, especially flossing, is done.
Like spacing between the teeth, crowded teeth can become an issue if left untreated, especially in more severe cases. Sufficient crowding can lead to biting of the inner cheeks, breathing and speech issues, and issues with chewing food.
Braces can greatly help to make space so that crowded teeth can be properly aligned within the mouth.
A bit of crowding isn’t always an issue, but severe crowding could also cause difficulty in keeping the teeth clean since teeth are often twisted in angles that are hard to clean. As well as this, flossing the teeth can become much harder.
Are braces for you?
If you have one or more of the conditions listed above, you may or may not require braces. In the most severe of cases, it’s likely braces will be quite necessary to ensure you won’t suffer from oral-related problems, however, your dentist is the ultimate professional that can tell you whether or not you may require braces for your condition.
Know that virtually everyone has a slightly misaligned jaw or deals with spacing problems or crowding, though not each and every case needs to be fixed.
Some of these issues may cause very few problems, if any, for some patients while causing others severe discomfort and problems with eating, for instance. Always check with a dental professional.