We can help with a variety of conditions. Before choosing a brace, it is important to work out the features that concern you and plan a treatment suitable for your needs.
Orthodontic problems usually present with combinations of features which may include the following...
GAPS IN TEETH
Gaps between the teeth can develop in children & adults. Gaps are not as common as crowding. There are many causes and solutions depend on the cause. The teeth may be genetically small or missing. There may be fleshy gum between the two front teeth (frenum). In adults who have gum disease, the lack of bone support allows teeth to "drift" and gaps may appear or worsen.
Teeth may not grow straight and it is common for them to become crooked. If they have been relatively straight in teenage, they may become more crooked as crowding increases with age. Typically, late crowding develops in the 20's but can happen at any age. Often people notice their teeth moving slowly over 1-5 years before seeking advice. It may also be associated with the growth of wisdom teeth.
Crowding is a common problem due to insufficient space for the number of teeth. After the age of 12 years, crowding is likely to worsen rather than resolve. It may be that the teeth are big and the jaws are small. If baby teeth have been removed too early, the space for the adult teeth can be lost which leads to crowding. Treatment may require removal of teeth or widening of the arches to create space. Crowding can suddenly increase in the 20's.
Open bites are the opposite to deep bites. The front teeth don't overlap and it is difficult to bite through thin slices of ham. It could be caused by thumb-sucking or related to the divergent growth of the jaws in longer faced individuals. Skeletal open bites can be inherited and prove difficult to treat without jaw surgery. in milder cases, braces can help to improve the appearance.
Protruding teeth is a common problem and is often related to the lower jaw being shorter than the upper or due to thumb-sucking. The lips struggle to meet and the lower lip tends to catch on the upper front teeth. Protruding front teeth can be prone to injury and treatment should be considered early. Sometimes early brace treatment at 10-12 years can help. We may need to remove adult teeth as part of the treatment.
The overlap of the top and bottom teeth can be increased so that the lower teeth are hidden by the uppers. This is a painful problem if the lower teeth bite onto the gum behind the upper front teeth, making the gum sore during eating. Treating deep bites can be difficult because it is related to strong muscles that shape the face. Commonly, people are not aware of their deep bite and it does not have to be corrected.
An underbite is relatively unusual and may run in your family. Sometimes, the teeth grow in the wrong position and end up biting the wrong way. This needs early correction. Other times, the jaws are mismatched, with the lower being relatively longer than the upper. This skeletal problem is often inherited & worsens during puberty It is best treated in the mid/late teens with braces & may require jaw surgery.
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