At Sensational Smiles Orthodontics, we strive to help each patient maximize their “smile potential.” There are many reasons one might need or seek orthodontic treatment, and Dr. Frances Hamman and her team want to share their experience to assist patients in correcting their dental concerns. It can be difficult to know when to seek assistance, so why not start today? It all begins with a simple look and a relaxed discussion of the dental situation…that’s all.
As with any aspect of your health, it is best to be proactive. Sometimes a minor dental issue can take your oral health in the wrong direction. Please continue reading to learn about some of the most common reasons to see an orthodontist. If one or more of these issues sounds familiar, feel free to give our office a call to schedule your visit so you can get a smile “status report.”
Dental crowding occurs when there is not enough space for permanent teeth. Crowding can be mild, moderate, or severe. Sometimes, canine teeth do not fully erupt. We can address this issue with classic braces or Invisalign. Both methods use gentle pressure to move teeth into desired positions over time.
When teeth are spaced, it can be for several reasons. Sometimes, it can be related to jaw size, tooth size, missing teeth, or a large “frenum,” which is a piece of soft tissue that connects the lips to the gum tissue in both the upper and lower jaws. A thumb or finger habit can potentially create excessive spacing. Gapped teeth may cause someone to feel self-conscious and want to smile less often. Orthodontic treatment aims to solve this problem.
An overbite happens when the upper front teeth protrude beyond the lower front teeth. In severe cases, an overbite can contribute to problems such as jaw pain or excessive tooth wear. It is a very common issue, and usually, an overbite is genetic. Sometimes, a thumb or finger habit can also contribute to the situation.
When a person has an underbite, the lower jaw protrudes further than the upper teeth. Less common than an overbite, it is typically due to genetics as well. Severe underbites may require surgery, but it is best to have an evaluation to better understand the true scenario.
A crossbite occurs when the upper teeth fit inside or “within” the lower teeth when the mouth is closed or at rest. Crossbites can be genetic or due to things like delayed loss of baby teeth, or habits like mouth breathing and thumb sucking. Treatment can begin as early as seven years old using palate expanders, and adults with milder cases can sometimes have this problem addressed using braces or Invisalign. Whether or not a crossbite can be fully corrected depends on the location of the crossbite, the severity of the crossbite, and the age of the patient.
This situation happens when the upper and lower front teeth do not touch when the mouth is closed. It can develop in the front of the mouth (anterior) or the back of the mouth (posterior). Causes can be genetic, due to a jaw injury, or behavioral (thumb sucking, mouth breathing, or tongue thrusting).
The most important thing to remember as you consider an orthodontic evaluation is that our goal is to inform you of your particular situation. Whether or not you start treatment will always be up to you. Our goal is to help you understand your case, ensure you understand if it is something important to correct, and help you worry less about the situation.