Straight Teeth: 6 Procedures and Benefits

woman smiling with straight teeth

For a perfect smile, you need straight teeth.

However, not many adults have perfect teeth which prevent them from smiling widely.

Though, some people are also fine living with crooked and misaligned teeth.

Once, you get used to them, you may not find it necessary to straighten them.

We are all about being confident in your body but straight teeth have numerous health benefits.

Once you straighten them, your quality of life can improve and so can your self-esteem.

This article discusses their benefits and how you can get them.

man using an appliance for straight teeth

Getting Straight Teeth: Procedures

Orthodontic devices and procedures help to push the teeth in place and make them straight.

Your teeth are misaligned and crooked probably because of the transition from baby teeth to adult teeth.

If your baby teeth were not well taken care of and in case you lost a tooth to a cavity then your permanent teeth will not erupt in the proper position.

Hence, your permanent teeth may either be crooked, misaligned with an overbite, overjet, crossbite and underbite.

You can get buck teeth if you kept thumb sucking or using a pacifier or bottle feeder after your adult teeth came.

Therefore, you need to take care of your child’s baby teeth so that there are no problems with their adult teeth.

Following good oral hygiene such as brushing and flossing from a young age will prevent tooth decay and harm to the enamel.

Furthermore, limit the daily sugar intake of your child so that they do not accumulate plaque.

Now that you or your child have imperfect teeth already, you should go for the following options to straighten them.

straight teeth braces

Braces For Straight Teeth

Dental Braces use pressure to bring your teeth back in position.

The brackets and wires exert control over your teeth over a period of one to two years.

However, the time spent on the treatment depends on the extent of work required.

Braces can treat a variety of problems with your teeth such as:

  • Gaps
  • Crowding
  • Misalignment
  • Jawlines that don’t close
  • Overbite and overjet, crossbite and underbite

You do not need a recovery time while you are in treatment and also it is not a very painful procedure.

To add to that it is minimally invasive and maybe only slightly uncomfortable.

However, if you care about your aesthetics then the metal brackets’ look may concern you.

Though that is a thing of the past, now there are several other options for braces besides traditional metal.

These include:

  • Ceramic Braces
  • Lingual Braces
  • Invisalign

Traditional metal braces contain metal wires and brackets that make your mouth look full of metal.

They contain stainless steel wire, elastic rings and archwires to bring the jaw in position because of the pressure.

They work well in bringing your teeth to a straight position in about a year or two.

Ceramic Braces are slightly different and less apparent.

This is because they use clear brackets and not metal.

This does not make your mouth look full of metal but you will still be wearing a metal wire.

However, they work similarly to metal braces, by exerting pressure on the teeth and the jaw conforming to that.

You can get ceramic braces if you do not like the look of traditional metal.

Lingual braces, however, completely hide your braces.

These and Invisalign should be your option if you want to completely hide your braces. More on that below!

While they look like traditional metal braces, they go on the inside of your teeth rather than the front.

Hence, no one else can tell that you wear braces.

Ask your dentist what is the best choice for you among these as lingual and ceramic braces may not treat some imperfections as well as traditional metal ones.

woman going from braces to retainers

Retainers and Invisalign

As soon as you finish using braces your dentist will get you teeth retainers.

They help to keep your newly straight teeth in position.

You need to wear them for about six months to one year or even till life.

If you don’t then you will soon see a relapse in less than 10 years.

Retainers are also of three types:

  • Clear Plastic
  • Hawley Retainers
  • Fixed

The removable retainers are either made of clear plastic retainers or are Hawley retainers.

Clear plastic retainers are similar looking to Invisalign however, they just keep the teeth in position and do not align it any further.

You can remove them for eating and drinking but should keep them on for at least 20 to 22 hours a day for a year.

Hawley retainers are wires that go behind your teeth but are easily removable while eating and drinking.

However, they are not as effective as clear plastic retainers.

Permanent retainers are however fixed.

They stay in position and you cannot remove them unless your dentist does in case of an infection.

Hence, you will not miss wearing them or lose them and your teeth will also remain perfectly straight.

Though if you do not like the idea of having permanent retainers inside your mouth for life then it is better to go for clear plastic removable ones and diligently wear them when needed.

Another option is to go for clear aligners such as Invisalign.

Invisalign helps in alignment and minor malocclusion.

Hence, it is not the best option for crowding but a good one for crossbite and misalignment.

They work similarly like braces exerting pressure on teeth and look like retainers, clear and unnoticeable.

If you care about your appearance then aligners are your best option for getting straight teeth.

You will get a series of aligners that put pressure on your teeth gradually making them more straight overtime.

Remember that you should not try to straighten your teeth at home.

The home procedures can worsen the condition of your mouth and cause infections.

In fact, your tooth may fall out and so can also lead to pain and cracks.

So any DIY equipment, someone else’s retainers or rubber bands will only worsen things for you.

man getting veneers in dentist office

Cosmetic Dentistry and Other Procedures

Cosmetic Dentistry can make your imperfect teeth look perfect.

It involves procedures like veneers and dental bonding.

Your dentist can place veneers on your teeth to make them look straighter.

These procedures can be effective if your teeth have large gaps in between, have cracks or are chipped, and do not have smooth alignment.

Other procedures include the alignment of the jaw such as:

Orthognathic surgery

The surgery moves the jaw position and recovery time can be up to 2 to 3 weeks.

This is an alternative for braces when they are not enough to align your jaw and teeth.

Herbst Appliance 

It cures a misalignment in the jaw and goes along with braces.

Though, it is mostly used on children.

It is a metal device with rings that attach to the teeth at the top and bottom.

Palatal Expander

Your child may have a small mouth that does not allow permanent teeth to erupt properly.

This can lead to crossbite and buck teeth hence, a palatal expander makes sure that your child’s teeth come in straight.

It works by pushing teeth apart to make space for new eruptions.

Hence, it is beneficial for young children who still have a growing jaw.

Now you know all these procedures to get perfect teeth.

However, why should you have completely straight teeth in the first place? Let’s find out below!

straight teeth benefits

Benefits of Straight Teeth

  • Efficient Cleaning

It is not that simple to clean crowded teeth and those that have gaps.

Crooked teeth are also difficult to floss.

Hence, this accumulates plaque and can lead to decay as well as gum disease or worsen to periodontal disease.

Whereas it is much easier to clean, brush and floss completely straight teeth.

Therefore, maintaining oral hygiene is comparatively easier which keeps you away from oral health problems.

  • Speech Clarity

Imperfect teeth also affect the way you speak and your speech clarity.

Children who do not transition well from baby to permanent teeth may have a lisp.

While the crowdedness in your mouth along with protruding teeth can disrupt your speech pattern.

When your teeth are straight, your speech is clear.

  • Much Less Wear

The action of biting and chewing results in wear and tear of your teeth and enamel over the years.

However, it is much more if your teeth are not straight.

Crooked and misaligned teeth result in bite problems hence exert much more pressure on the teeth rather than straight ones.

Furthermore, they can flatten biting surfaces and cause fractures, chips or cracks.

Straightening your teeth helps to reduce the wear and tear from chewing and biting.

  • No Pain in Head, Pain and Neck 

Having crooked teeth results in misaligning your jaw.

Hence, there is more stress on your jaw and joints while biting and chewing.

Your temporomandibular joints go through extra stress and pressure when the bite is misaligned.

This results in pain going from your jaw bone, joints to the neck, head and face.

Straight Teeth do not pose any stress on jawbone and joints.

  • Better Digestion

The first step in digestion is chewing food.

Imperfect teeth cannot chew food properly and this does slow down digestion.

Additionally, your stomach and intestines have to work more on digesting food that you did not chew properly.

Hence soon you will have an unhealthy gut and issues with the stomach.

Whereas straight teeth help chew food properly and speed up the process of digestion.

Conclusion 

Getting straight teeth is a healthy choice.

It will improve your oral and digestive systems.

Moreover, you will flaunt your beautiful smile widely without hesitation.

 

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