Straightening your teeth is the best means of enhancing the aesthetic beauty of your smile. However, straightening a crooked set of teeth has several medical benefits that go beyond simple cosmetic value. Crooked or misaligned teeth are usually harder to clean and they’re more prone to bacterial infection, which makes you more likely to suffer from cavities and gum disease.
Orthodontics refers to a branch of dentistry that is concerned with the positioning of your teeth and jaws. Ideally, your teeth should be perfectly aligned and straight so that your upper teeth fall evenly over your lower teeth when you clench your hind teeth. However, for various reasons — overbite, underbite, crowded teeth, narrow jaws, etc — your teeth may not be evenly aligned. In that case, the dentist or orthodontist may recommend orthodontic appliances like Invisalign, clear aligners, or braces to move your teeth in the desired direction. In addition to enhancing your teeth’s appearance, it also helps you clean your teeth better and decreases the risk of cavities and dental decay.
It’s necessary to treat malocclusion or misaligned teeth because it can lead to several other problems. Malocclusion, for example, can lead to speech impediments, the uneven distribution of bite force can damage your enamel, and it can also lead to teeth grinding and bruxism. Teeth grinding, in turn, can lead to TMD, headaches, jaw pain, earaches, and many other issues. Orthodontic treatment evenly distributes the bite force and aligns your teeth so you don’t suffer from any of these complications.
People often believe that orthodontic procedures are only meant for teenagers. It is ideal to get orthodontic treatments during your teenage years when your permanent teeth are still malleable. However, adults can also opt for — and should opt for — orthodontic treatments. If you don’t want the braces to be visible, you can also opt for invisible aligners and braces.