You might have heard about the condition known as “bad bite”. More accurately and, perhaps, scientifically known as malocclusion, the condition essentially means that a person has a set of teeth that’s either crooked or crowded. In other variations, the condition manifests itself in the form of uneven bite, caused by upper and lower jaws that do not meet properly. In many cases, these teeth conditions are hereditary, while premature teeth loss, thumb-sucking at an early age as well accidents can also contribute to the issue.
Addressing the issue timely under the guidance of an experienced orthodontic professional can provide some surprising results. This will not only result in a more appealing smile but will also do a lot to your oral health in general. Both crowded and crooked teeth can complicate the maintenance of proper oral hygiene. This, in turn, often leads to early teeth decay and a variety of gum diseases. Causing difficulties when it comes to chewing, they can also damage enamel, which may lead to serious jaw problems.
What are braces made from?
Braces, the most commonplace and also one of the most effective orthodontic appliances, usually come in two forms, one of which is more inconspicuous than the other. When it comes to brackets or the part of the braces that actually connects them with the teeth, they can vary in size and the way they’re applied. In some cases, they will attach to the back side of the teeth, in order to make them less evident.
Made either of ceramics, metal, plastic or a fusion of the all three materials, brackets can be designed to suit the color of your teeth. For those who enjoy accessorizing, it’s entirely possible to have brackets that are heart-shaped, look like minuscule footballs or simply boast appealing holiday hues such as blue, red and white. You might have seen people with braces that are gold-plated or have luminous retainers – both of which are also available.
When should the treatment begin?
Usually, malocclusions become observable starting with the age of 6 further developing till the age of 12, as the permanent teeth gradually replace deciduous teeth. Orthodontic intervention usually takes place between the ages of 8 and 14, in order to attain better results. With this in mind, the best time for orthodontic evaluation would be the age of 7 as it’s the period when most minors have both deciduous and permanent teeth. A professional dentist will be able to determine the potential problems timely, but it does not exclude the necessity for further check-ups.
Should adults wear braces?
It’s not only minors that can experience the positive effects of having braces. The fact that you’re an adult does not mean that it’s too late to fix crowded or crooked teeth, improper jaw positioning, overbites or underbites using braces.
In fact, the process associated with the teeth moving using braces really doesn’t change with age. It may take a little longer for an adult individual since the already developed facial bones have stopped their growth. There’s also a category of corrections that cannot be carried out using braces alone. With that said, it’s really never too late to acquire the smile you’ve always dreamed of.
If, however, the idea of braces does not appeal to you at all, there are other dental procedures for enhancing your smile, some of which are actually completely unnoticeable to those around you. To learn more about this, read the overview of Invisalign procedure.
Can I play sports while wearing braces?
If your lifestyle involves a lot of sports-related activities, the use of a special mouth guard is highly advisable. Usually, your dentist will recommend the best mouth guard to wear over your braces. Note that braces do not make it more difficult to play brass, or woodwind instruments, although some time might be necessary to get fully accustomed.
Dr. Sandris Bajars
General Dentistry, Endodontics, Orthodontics
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