If you have crowded teeth, you may be wondering whether this condition can lead to any health issues!
At Insoft & Hurst Orthodontics, we believe that patient education is incredibly valuable. We want you to be informed about your smile and your health. Let’s explore how crowded teeth affect your smile, and what we can do to fix this condition!
What causes crowded teeth?
When there isn’t enough room in your jaw to fit all of your teeth in a healthy alignment, your smile is considered overcrowded. A crowded condition may be due to any of the following causes:
- • Genetics. Yes, orthodontic conditions are often hereditary! Because genes are responsible for creating everything from your eye color to your nose shape, they also play a part in how your smile grows and develops. So if you needed braces as a child, your children may need them too.
- • Tooth shape. Every tooth in your mouth isn’t the same shape, because they all serve different purposes – from incisors to molars and canines. Some shapes take up more room than others and can lead to more crowding.
- • Early tooth loss. Your baby teeth play a vital role in the health of your adult teeth! Not only do they allow you as an infant and beyond to chew solid foods, but they also preserve the space for adult teeth to emerge. So whether your child lost baby teeth earlier than most due to decay or an accident, it’s important to schedule an orthodontic evaluation around age 7 so crowding doesn’t become an issue for them.
- • Poor habits: Thumb-sucking, tongue thrusting, or using a pacifier beyond age 4 can greatly affect how your child’s teeth grow and develop. This is because the repetitive force can negatively affect the healthy development of their palate, causing narrowing of the upper jaw and crowding of the front teeth.
- • Congenital disorder or rare conditions. These abnormalities found at birth (or in pregnancy) can cause orthodontic issues like crowded teeth such as those with cleft palate or hyperdontia.
How does teeth crowding affect your smile?
There are a few different ways to refer to ‘teeth crowding’. These include: overlapping, overcrowding, or crowded teeth. When teeth are bunched together, this can cause problems with your overall oral health, and more:
- • Low self-esteem: Because crowded teeth are easier to spot than most orthodontic conditions, this can unfortunately attract negative comments. Yea, we’re talking bullies! Having crowded teeth at any age can impact your self-confidence.
- • Speech difficulties: In some cases, crowded teeth can affect your speech. So if you or your child has trouble pronouncing “s” and “sh” sounds, teeth crowding may be to blame.
- • Hard to clean teeth: Crowded teeth tend to overlap one another, making it difficult to clean teeth thoroughly with your toothbrush and floss. This puts you at an increased risk of developing gum disease and tooth decay (cavities).
- • Trouble chewing: When teeth are misaligned, this can cause discomfort when chewing, and can cause potential jaw issues, like TMJ-D.
What if I have mild crowded teeth?
About 30 to 60% percent of people have this common orthodontic condition and most of them have only mildly crowded teeth. Even mildly crowded teeth can lead to health and self-esteem issues!
This is why we provide free orthodontic consultations with our experienced orthodontists, Drs. Insoft and Hurst! Once Dr. Insoft or Dr. Hurst examines your teeth, we’ll be able to give you some answers about your smile.
How do you fix crowded teeth?
If you have crowded teeth, orthodontic treatment can help you! At your first visit with us, our team will take digital x-rays, diagnostic photos, and perform a comprehensive exam on your smile.
If this assessment shows that you’d benefit from orthodontics, you’ll have the option of Invisalign clear aligners, metal or clear advanced self-ligating braces or traditional metal braces.
Still have questions about teeth crowding problems?
Having crowded teeth can affect your self-esteem and oral health if left untreated. If you’re ready to experience the perfect smile you’ve always wanted, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us! We’d love to help you live your best quality of life.