Your smile is unique. But in general, your upper teeth should slightly overlap your lower ones and the molars should fit together comfortably.
Misaligned teeth, also called malocclusion, are those that don’t fit together correctly. The more severe the malocclusion, the greater the risk of oral health problems. Alignment issues in teeth can also lead to lower confidence.
Fortunately, orthodontists like Dr. Hansen in Las Vegas have the expertise to fix issues like these—and give you a happier, healthier smile.
What Causes Misaligned Teeth?
Malocclusion may be hereditary. If your parents have or had crooked teeth, you’re more likely to have them and also pass misalignment on to your children.
Certain conditions and habits in childhood can result in misalignment later in life. Children born with a cleft lip or palate have a greater risk of developing malocclusions. So do children who suck on their thumbs or use a pacifier past three years. If a child doesn’t have enough space in their jaw to accommodate all of their teeth, malocclusions may also occur.
Other risk factors include:
- Injuries to the face. A hit to your face or mouth can damage your jaw or cause tooth loss. Both can lead to misalignment.
- Poor dental care. Cavities and gum disease can affect the alignment of your teeth.
- Poor nutrition. A diet lacking in essential vitamins and minerals can increase the risk for tooth decay, especially in children.
How Can Misaligned Teeth Affect Your Life?
Misaligned teeth can affect your oral health and confidence. Issues someone with malocclusion may face include:
- Difficulty speaking properly
- Excessive wear on your teeth and jawbone
- Gum disease and gum recession
- Lower self-esteem and avoidance of social situations
- Pain while chewing
- Poor digestion
What Are the Treatment Options for Malocclusion?
You don’t need to live with misaligned teeth. Treatment options can restore the health and appearance of your smile.
Braces are one of the most well-known solutions for misaligned teeth. The process involves bonding brackets to each tooth and attaching a wire. The wire gradually shifts the teeth into proper alignment. In addition to conventional metal braces, there are also ceramic and self-litigating options.
Invisalign provides a removable and practically invisible alternative to braces. You wear clear aligners, which guide your teeth to where they need to go.
Some individuals need an orthodontic appliance to help correct alignment issues. For instance, a Herbst device helps to correct an overbite.
Looking for an Orthodontist in Las Vegas?
If you’re in Las Vegas, Dr. Hansen of Hansen Orthodontics can help. He and his team continue to educate themselves on the latest research, tools, and technology to keep on providing patients with the high-quality care they deserve.
With the locations found throughout the Las Vegas Valley, Dr. Hansen and his team have plenty of experience treating patients with varying degrees of malocclusions. Dr. Hansen has treated thousands of people successfully with Invisalign.
Ready to Have a Healthy, Happy Smile?
Treating misaligned teeth helps improve your oral health and quality of life. It also helps to improve the quality of your smile, giving you a much-needed confidence boost.
Get started on that healthy, happy smile. For more information and to schedule your free consultation, contact Hansen Orthodontics today.