Teeth Straightening Treatments to Improve Your Smile and Oral Health
By Patrick Casey on March 01, 2016
Do you have crooked, overlapping, or widely spaced teeth? Have you always disliked your overbite, underbite, or cross bite? Perhaps you’re one of the many adults who formerly wore braces, but neglected to maintain straight teeth by wearing a retainer. Or maybe malocclusion is causing temporomandibular joint (TMJ) pain, headaches, earaches, and jaw clicking. Whatever the cause of your misaligned teeth, teeth straightening treatment can improve the health and appearance of your smile. To learn more about the teeth straightening treatments available at our Montreal, QC practice, contact us to schedule a consultation with Dr. Charles or Dr. Patrick Casey.
Orthodontics to Correct Malocclusion
When you shut your mouth, your upper and lower teeth are supposed to fit together comfortably, in a position that allows the jaw muscles to rest. This is called good occlusion. When the upper and lower teeth do not fit together well, the jaw joint and surrounding muscles never truly rest. This results in a condition called bruxism, which is a habitual grinding and gnashing of the teeth, often while sleeping. TMJ disorder may also result, causing pain in the jaws, head, neck, and shoulders, as well as headaches and earaches. Grinding also puts the teeth at risk for cracks, crazing, and chips. Because the repeated grinding on the molars causes the enamel to wear, the teeth also become more susceptible to cavities and sensitivity.
In some situations, malocclusion may not cause bruxism or TMJ disorder. Malocclusion comes in many forms:
- Upper protrusion or overjet
- Open bite
- Cross bite
- Spacing or crowding issues
- Misplaced midline
Orthodontic treatments can correct malocclusion. Your dentist may recommend traditional metal wire-and-bracket braces or a less conspicuous version, with nickel-colored wires and clear or porcelain brackets. Braces may also be placed on the lingual (back) surface of teeth, in some cases, so they are not visible from the front. Teens and adolescents sometimes prefer colored brackets. Clear, removable aligners can correct some instances of malocclusion, but are not suggested for complex orthodontic cases.
Cosmetic Options for Straightening Teeth
If your occlusion is healthy or only moderately off, your dentist may recommend orthodontics to improve the appearance of your smile. Short-term braces or clear, removable aligners are solutions that will shift teeth, like traditional braces would. However, if you need only to correct slightly gapped, overlapped, rotated, or crooked front teeth in the front of your mouth, you may not require orthodontic treatment at all. Both porcelain veneers and cosmetic bonding can address minor smile imperfections, while also improving the color and shape of front teeth.
Schedule a Consultation Today
Whether you suffer from TMJ or bruxism-related pain, or you want to improve the aesthetics of your smile, we invite you to schedule a consultation to discuss teeth straightening treatments. At your appointment, Dr. Charles or Dr. Patrick Casey will examine your oral condition, then talk with you about your expected treatment outcome. You and the dentist will discuss various options to determine the best orthodontic solution for your goals and lifestyle.
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“I felt more like I was talking to a friend than I was to a dentist.” Nancy Lanzolla, Former Patient