Why should a patient consider orthodontics?

Nobody likes to have crooked teeth or some displeasing dental cosmetic irregularity that they have to see in the mirror every morning. While there are other ways to correct cosmetic problems, like whitening or veneers, if the teeth are in the wrong place, orthodontics is usually the best answer.

WHAT ARE THE REASONS?

Patients are more concerned about their looks while their dentist is most concerned with function.

The upper and lower teeth are intended to meet in a certain place. If they don’t come together properly you can’t chew your food very well, and then the food becomes harder to digest.

A bonus to having straight teeth is that home care becomes much easier. Have you seen people smile and their lower teeth are particularly crooked? There are so many hidden areas that are difficult to clean and frequently result in bone loss around the teeth. The bone loss continues resulting in first mobile teeth and then the teeth can actually fall out! This is much more common than you might expect. Having braces and having the teeth placed in the correct position in the bone can actually help to preserve the bone and make oral hygiene that much easier for the rest of your life.

A special reason is if the patients have a skeletal discrepancy which causes the teeth not to come together correctly. You may have noticed people with a huge underbite (their lower jaw is big and juts forward so that the upper teeth are covered by the lowers in normal closure) or perhaps seeming to have hardly any jaw at all. These conditions are treated by an orthodontist in conjuction with an oral surgeon. A treatment plan is made, the orthodontist gets the teeth in position for the first phase, then the oral surgeon will surgically move the bone so that the bite is where the orthodontist wants it, and then the teeth are moved into the final desired position. This is referred to as orthognathic surgery and is the most complicated aspect of orthodontics. Repositioning the jaw can give the most dramatic improvements in a patients looks.

With proper orthodontics both patient and dentist have good reason to smile.