- Published Date: 27 Jan 2021
- Updated Date: 22 Mar 2021
- Reading Time: 8 min
Medically Reviewed by
Dr. Emily Hubis D.M.D
Table of contents
- What Causes Gaps Between Your Teeth?
- Why Is Straightening Your Teeth Important?
- Why Is Aligning Your Bite Important?
- How Do You Know if You Have a Problem With the Alignment of Your Bite?
- How Can Malocclusions and Diastema Be Treated?
- Straightening Your Teeth
Do you feel self-conscious about the gaps between your teeth? Gaps between your teeth can not only affect the confidence that you have in your smile, but they can also be a place for food to get stuck. This can cause problems for your gums and your teeth and can lead to infections, gum disease, and tooth decay.
But it doesn’t have to be this way. Just because you have gaps between your teeth, does not mean they cannot cannot be fixed.
Similarly, if you have an unaligned bite, this can also be a problem. You may find that your teeth are difficult to brush and maintaining clean teeth can become a challenge. This, in turn, leads to tooth decay and gingivitis. Not only this, but misaligned teeth can rub against each other and cause weaknesses in their protective layers.
In this article, we’ll discuss why straightening your teeth and fixing your gaps is as important as aligning your bite.
What Causes Gaps Between Your Teeth?
The gap between two different teeth is called a “diastema.” These gaps will often appear between the upper front two teeth, however, gaps can appear between any two teeth in the mouth.
There are a number of different reasons why someone may have gaps forming between their teeth. These include:
- Missing teeth or teeth that are undersized- In the instance that you have a missing tooth or a tooth that is too small the teeth that surround the gap will attempt to close the gap. This, however, creates further gaps on the other side.
- An oversized labial frenum – if the tissue that extends from the inside of your upper lip down to the gums is too long, this can cause a gap in your two front teeth.
- The size of your jawbone and teeth do not match – One cause may be that your jawbone is too large and that your teeth are too small. This means that there will be extra space between several of your teeth.
- Gum disease- If you have gum disease it can cause your jawbone to weaken and then to recede. As the jawbone holds your teeth in place, losing bone could mean that your teeth will start to come loose and fall out.
- The spaces have developed through bad habits –Habits such as sucking your thumb can pull the front teeth forwards and cause gaps to form.
- An improper swallowing reflex- when you swallow your tongue should naturally touch the roof of your mouth. When you have an improper swallowing reflex it means that your tongue moves forward against the front teeth. Over time, the pressure will cause the front teeth to move and a gap will form.
Even if the gaps in your teeth are not a problem for you in an aesthetic sense, you should still get your diastema looked at by your dentist to ensure that you don’t have any major underlying conditions which need addressing.
Gaps between your teeth could also mean that you have a misaligned bite. This can lead to your teeth becoming weakened or breaking.
Why Is Straightening Your Teeth Important?
There are many reasons why straightening your teeth is important. If you have crooked or crowded teeth, it could cause you some serious health problems.
Your Mouth Will Be Cleaner
Inside your mouth at any one time, there are millions of bacteria that, although harmless when kept under control could cause problems if left unmanaged. If left to their own devices, these bacteria could cause tooth decay, periodontal disease and bad breath.
If your teeth are crowded, then this could be the perfect breeding ground for this type of problem bacteria as they will tend to multiply on the food particles that get stuck between your teeth.
Straightening your teeth will allow the blood flow to improve in your periodontal tissues. This makes your gums and teeth healthier and creates less space for bacteria to breed
In addition to this, straighter teeth are much easier to clean, meaning that overall you will be able to keep bacteria under control at all times.
You Will Lower Your Risk of Developing Periodontal Disease
Because crooked teeth create a surface that is difficult to clean it can be harder to ensure that you have the highest standard of oral health. If you have crooked teeth, you will have more chance of developing gingivitis and/or periodontal disease as your gums will get inflamed due to bacteria because they are not getting cleaned properly.
A sign that your gums may be inflamed is that your gums are bleeding. If you spot that your gums are bleeding, then it is important to make an appointment to see your dentist at the earliest opportunity.
Left untreated, gingivitis can progress to periodontitis. Your immune system will need to fight off large quantities of bacteria and can lead to receding gums and the breakdown of jaw bone tissue.
You Will Lower the Risk of Heart Disease and Stroke
There is a strong link between periodontal disease and cardiovascular disease. The chances of developing cardiovascular disease rise by up to 35% if you have periodontal disease. This is caused by the inflammation of the gums. With so much bacteria involved, it travels through the blood to cause problems elsewhere. Since all blood flows to and from the heart, there is a strong risk of it landing up there.
You Will Improve Your Self Confidence
A healthy, beautiful smile does wonders for your self confidence! Oftentimes, a smile is one of the first things you notice when meeting someone. Knowing you have a nice smile, with straight teeth can give you the boost you may need to nail that job interview, or to smile big in those wedding pictures, or to have the courage to talk to someone you have previously shied away from.
Why Is Aligning Your Bite Important?
The misalignment of your teeth is known as malocclusion. This is a very common condition, and, although you may experience it right now and it may not be causing you any pain or discomfort currently it is likely to cause you issues in the future. Avoiding straightening your teeth right now may make things worse for you in the long run. It’s a good idea to get that bite looked at sooner rather than later.
There are several key reasons why you should address your misaligned bite.
Aligning Your Bite Will Help Reduce the Risk of Damage
If your bite goes uncorrected it could result in you damaging your teeth. If your teeth are crowded together they will rub up against each other, this will cause your enamel to wear down.
When your teeth are crowded together it can be very difficult to brush or floss them. Food may become trapped between your teeth and as a result, cavities may form.
Your Smile Will Improve
When your teeth are straight it can change your appearance considerably. Not only will you regain your confidence in your smile, but you will also be able to change your expression. If you have an overbite or an underbite, for example, it can cause you to look angry due to the way that your jaw sits- even when you are not actually angry.
You Will Be Able to Sleep Better At Night
Believe it or not, there are many ways in which the alignment of your teeth can affect the quality and quantity of your sleep. When teeth are not in the right place it can cause tension in your jaw and neck. This can cause pain and migraines which will affect your ability to sleep or to stay asleep. In addition to this, misaligned teeth may interfere with your breathing and will cause a form of sleep apnea.
You Will Find it Easier to Eat
You may not notice that your misaligned teeth will cause you any difficulty when you are eating however there is definitely a connection between your ability to eat easily and how aligned your bite is. If your teeth or your jaw are misaligned, this can cause you difficulties while you are eating- it may even cause you pain. For some people, it can result in more severe pain including headaches. In addition to this, you may not be able to chew your food fully. This can lead to problems further on with issues digesting your food causing stomach aches.
People Will Find it Easier to Understand You
It is very common for people who have misaligned bites to have slurred speech. This is because the overbite or underbite will contort the jaw into positions that make it difficult to form words clearly.
While you may not experience problems with your speech right now, that’s not to say that your malocclusions won’t cause you more problems later on.
How Do You Know if You Have a Problem With the Alignment of Your Bite?
You may not be able to see anything wrong with the alignment of your teeth right now and you may not be experiencing any of the symptoms associated with malocclusions. However, it is likely that these will begin to start occurring eventually.
You may look at your smile and not notice any minor misalignments in your teeth. You may be experiencing some of the symptoms that seem less related to your teeth such as issues with your digestion or sleep. In these instances, having your teeth checked over by your dentist will be a good idea. Your dentist will be able to take x-rays and will work out the exact cause of your misalignments.
Another way of your dentist identifying whether your misaligned teeth are causing a problem will be to look at whether there has been any wearing down of your teeth. Over a period of time, you teeth will wear from constant friction. In misaligned teeth, this wear and tear will be more prominent and will be uneven.
As your teeth wear down, you may experience sensitivity to hot, cold, and sweet food and drink. This too could be a symptom that you need to visit your dentist to have the alignment of your teeth looked at.
If you know that you have misaligned teeth, you should look at having treatment for this sooner rather than later. It could make the process considerably easier for you.
How Can Malocclusions and Diastema Be Treated?
If you have a malocclusion or a diastema, it is possible that you can have this treated. There are several ways that you can do this. You may be able to get braces. Having a wire brace may not be your first choice though. Many people will want to avoid having to wear metal braces in their mouths.
For those that want a solution to improving the gaps in their teeth and the alignment of the bite while straightening their teeth, consider treating your teeth with a plan of treatment from AlignerCo and enjoy the process of straightening your teeth from the comfort of your own home.
The way that teeth alignment from AlignerCo works is that you will order an impression kit from us which will get sent straight to your home. Then, once you receive this kit you can start off by taking an impression of your teeth as they are at the moment. After you have done this you can send it back to us. Our team of specialists will use this impression to create aligners that are specially designed for your own teeth.
After they are made, you wil receive specially made teeth aligners that are designed to move your teeth into a more desirable position in your mouth. Once you get them you can start to wear them. You can wear these specially designed aligners while you sleep. That way you’ll be able to straighten your teeth without having to do anything. All you need to do is wear the aligners for eight to ten hours each day over the course of eight to twelve months and you’ll have straighter teeth before you know it.
Straightening Your Teeth
With so many reasons to fix the gaps, align your bite, and straighten your teeth, isn’t it time that you addressed the potential health issues head-on and do something about your misalignment or gaps in your teeth?
Teeth straightening is a non-invasive treatment that can be carried out in the comfort of your home. Get in touch to find out more about how AlignerCo can help you straighten your teeth.
Medically Reviewed by
Dr. Emily Hubis D.M.D