Is it bad to have crooked teeth in Santa Monica?
Crooked teeth can be uncomfortable, provide endless nooks and crannies for bits of food to hide in, and they detract from an otherwise pleasant smile. That said, are they really such a big deal? The short answer is yes, they can be, because teeth that are misaligned or too close together may result in other mild to severe health problems. If that surprises you, here are some specific ways your oral health may be affected by your teeth.
1. Tooth decay
When teeth are crooked, it is difficult to clean them properly. This creates the perfect opportunity for plaque to build-up in those hard-to-reach areas between your teeth. Overtime, this greatly increases your risk for further tooth decay and gum disease.
In a perfect world, teeth fit together work in perpetual harmony with our jaw joints. However, if your teeth are crooked, it can change the way you chew and the way your teeth close together “at rest.” This is often called a misaligned bite. Your body reacts to that difference by trying to force them to fit together again. This often results in bruxism, or teeth grinding. Bruxism causes two major problems. First, your teeth get worn down from the constant rubbing together, and second, they can crack or chip from the pressure.
3. TM Disorder
In addition to the wear and tear of your teeth, bruxism causes your TM joints to suffer from the extra pressure put on them every time you chew. This greatly increases the risk of injury to your jaw joints and, left untreated, may result in a TMJ disorder and painful symptoms such as:
- Jaw joints that pop or get stuck
- A ringing sound in the ears, accompanied by ear pain
- Neck and back pain
- Muscle spasms in the face
What can you do?
Crooked teeth cannot resolve without treatment. There are many modern options for teeth straightening available these days. Which one will be most effective for you? The best way to answer that question is to schedule a consultation with a Santa Monica cosmetic dentist.