Many people get braces at some time in their lives because they aren’t happy with the way their teeth look when they smile. However, few people realize that braces often do more than just make your smile look pretty. Whether you are an adult looking into braces for yourself or a parent considering braces for your children, there is more to take into consideration besides the appearance of you or your children’s teeth. Take a look at a few reasons why braces should be an important consideration for you and/or your family.
Better Oral Hygiene
Depending on how crooked your teeth are, it can often be difficult to thoroughly and properly clean them on a daily basis. Crooked teeth can create extra nooks and crannies for germs and plaque to hide, putting the health of your teeth in danger. By getting braces and straightening out your teeth, those hard to clean areas will be eliminated, making it easier to keep your teeth clean all day every day.
If you or your children are very self-conscious about their teeth, their self-esteem can take a hit. Kids can often be made fun of if their teeth are more unusual than others, causing them to be embarrassed about their smile. By getting braces, you or your children can feel confident about your smile again, raising your self-esteem. This may not seem very important, but you will be amazed at how mending one insecurity can have such a big impact on the rest of your life.
Correct Bite Issues
Having a bite issue can mean a variety of things, but none of them are good for the health of your mouth. If you have an overbite, where your top jaw goes out much further than your lower jaw, you should seriously consider braces. If extreme, over bites can cause cuts and discomfort to the roof of your mouth, as well as bite problems. When your bite is off in any way, you are putting your teeth in danger. A bite that is not correct can wear down teeth, causing cavities or tooth breakage even if you have otherwise perfect oral hygiene. Bite issues can result in a variety of irreversible problems if not fixed earlier on in your life.
If you do decide that braces are important to you or your children’s health, an orthodontist appointment should be scheduled early on. Orthodontists generally suggest to visit them around the age of 7 or 8 to make sure their mouth has enough room for all of their adult teeth. If that is not a problem, orthodontists suggest coming in once all their adult teeth are in, around ages 10-14. It is preferable to have corrective procedures done when the mouth is still growing, as it tends to be less painful and more effective. If you or your children are well past those ages, however, don’t fret. These professionals can still give you the smile you want, while making sure your teeth are going to be as healthy as possible.
Written by Dr. Darren Wittenberger, an orthodontist in Columbia, MO and owner of his own practice, Advance Orthodontics
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