How can crooked teeth impact your health

Crooked teeth do more than just give you a bad smile, it can also seriously affect your health. The truth is, having crooked teeth is not just a circumstance of reduced aesthetics, but they are also more difficult to clean! A build-up of bacteria and plaque in the mouth can lead to cavities or tooth decay and inflammation of the gums. When there is tooth decay and gum disease, this can increase the likelihood of diseases such as stroke, diabetes, and heart disease.

Many people have crooked or misaligned teeth, but they are not all acquired in the same way. There are a number of reasons why people get crooked teeth. Toddlers frequently develop their baby teeth and permanent teeth in a crooked fashion. This can also happen when their teeth becomes crooked as they grow. This usually tends to occur whenever there is no room for teeth to grow. The teeth are typically too small to fill out the gum space in the mouth or the jaw is too small for the teeth.

We spoke to Vancouver orthodontist Dr. Loo who explained that crooked teeth are a typical problem encountered by numerous children, teens, and adults. Still, it may have more serious repercussions than people think because your oral health has been proven to affect your overall health. For this reason, it is imperative that dentists examine the underlying issues connected to crooked teeth.

Causes of Crooked Teeth

  • Poor dental care – If you don't take care of your teeth at home or if you are unable to visit the dentist regularly means that problems like cavities and gum disease are left to fester. When this happens, it can cause misaligned teeth and even more severe dental health problems.
  • Facial Injury – You can have one or more crooked teeth because of facial injuries which knock teeth out and shift it out of place.
  • Congenital Abnormalities – If someone is born with congenitally missing teeth, it will create spaces in between them. As time goes by, these spaces can push the neighboring teeth to move, because there will be little to no support from the nearby teeth.

Impact of Crooked Teeth on Health

  • Poor Oral Hygiene – If you have crooked and crowded teeth, your toothbrush won't be reach all the nooks and corners that exists. Harmful bacteria present in the mouth can multiply and produce many problems, if cleaning is not done correctly on a regular basis.
  • Gum Disease – Misaligned, crowded, or crooked teeth make it more difficult to clean them properly as they create more hiding places for plaque and bacteria thereby heightening the chance of gingival inflammation, bone loss, and gum recession. When tooth decay and gum disease occur, due to improper hygiene, it can affect overall health. Gum disease, is caused by the build-up of bacteria in the mouth and people who are diagnosed with gum disease often experience red or bleeding gums and/or bad breath.
  • Tooth Wear, Fracture And Loss – If the teeth are not aligned properly or crowded, it may affect the bite. When the teeth are misaligned, they may have a higher chance of being in danger to fracture, break, crack, or wear. Crooked teeth can also cause excess wear and tear on the teeth, gums, and jaw muscles leading to jaw strain, and chronic headaches.
  • Chewing Difficulty – Crooked teeth may hinder one’s ability to chew properly. It can affect someone's ability to enjoy food and in some cases even cause indigestion. Whenever the teeth don’t fit properly together, it can affect your ability to chew correctly and cause pain in the gums while chewing. This can also result in jaw soreness and/or muscle pain. Because mastication is the first step in the process of digestion, if this problem persists, it can lead to many other health problems, such as inferior nutrition, poor digestion, and stomach pain.
  • Bad Breath – It’s bad enough that crooked teeth are not aesthetically pleasing, but they also manage to collect plaque and bacteria which can cause bad breath!
  • Low Self-Esteem – Misaligned teeth may also affect mental health. Since an attractive smile boosts self-confidence, we can see the clear link between great teeth and self-esteem. Smiling also has been known to aid in reducing stress and increase levels of happiness but misaligned teeth may make you want to hide your smile and even speak or smile less frequently. Misaligned teeth can affect the way you talk, causing you to speak less. This can negatively affect your self-esteem and mental health.
  • Negative Impact On Whole-Body Health – Many studies have revealed a connection between oral health and overall health.

To Sum It up

The choice to improve misaligned teeth is a personal one, and there are many techniques and possibilities that exist to correct your smile. A decision like this can affect your entire life, in terms of your physical health and your mental health because of the confidence boost that is often associated with a great smile.

Photo: Dale Staton, Unsplash