It is never too late for a healthy and beautiful smile
The notion that orthodontics is limited to children and adolescents is now obsolete. A nice smile can be obtained at any age and contribute to improving appearance and increasing self-confidence, with a positive impact on professional and social life. In combination with the trend to grow in maturity and not in age, the goal is to maintain the best possible state of health – physical and oral – and external appearance. Hence, the large percentage of adults who resort to orthodontic treatment.
Modern, state-of-the-art mechanisms which are almost invisible contribute to this trend: tooth-colored braces (ceramic), lingual braces, clear braces are some of the options that make orthodontic treatment a realistic choice for adults.
By correcting orthodontic problems, we protect our health
Better public awareness in recent years has helped people realize that in addition to aesthetics, dental and gum health play an important role in preventing many diseases.
Crowded teeth, sparse/spacing teeth, open bite, malocclusion that can lead to excessive tooth abrasion or headaches and pain from the temporomandibular joint (TMJ), congestion that leads to poor hygiene, dental caries and periodontitis cause permanent damage to the tissues (or “periodontal ligament”) around the teeth and to the supporting bone. Also, midline deviation and asymmetry, lower and upper jaw prognathism, all the above are important indications of the need for orthodontic treatment.
Causes of orthodontic problems
Orthodontic problems can be either dental, when the teeth are not in the right position on the jaw (such as crowding, sparse teeth, open bite) or skeletal, when the jaws have not developed harmoniously with each other (such as overbite, prognathism) or a combination of dental and skeletal problems.
Orthodontic problems can be due to hereditary or environmental factors or bad habits, but they can also be a combination of all of the above. For example, a combination of parental genetic traits (such as a gene for large teeth from dad and a gene for small jaws from mom or vice versa) can lead to overcrowding or sparse teeth.
Examples of harmful habits that cause permanent damage to the teeth can be finger sucking, using a pacifier and tongue pushing beyond the age of 4 years. For this reason, more and more children show problems of closure, overcrowding of teeth, etc. during their development.
Another example that could be mentioned concerns the evolution of the human species. The prehistoric fruit picker needed more rows of molars than modern man. Today, our jaws are getting smaller but our wisdom teeth remain. This can result in the presence of enclosed teeth.
For all these reasons, timely orthodontic examination is important, as -depending on the case- orthodontic treatment may be needed early. With the right diagnosis and the right treatment plan, these problems are treated with great success and a good result justifies every effort.