When the dental formula (your teeth) are abnormally arranged it is called misalignment. In America, 90% of adults have teeth misalignment. The degree of misalignment varies from one person to another. It can be classified into several categories, but the most common ones are;
When the upper teeth overlap the lower teeth, it is normal, but when the lower teeth are biting the gums, it becomes an overbite.
Sometimes the arrangement of teeth in the mouth may not be uniform, and they may overlap each other as if there isn’t space to fit all of them. This type of misalignment is called overcrowding due to lack of space. Overlapping hinders flossing since the teeth are overlapped and this, in turn, may result in bacteria build up in between teeth.
The upper teeth, in some people, bite the inside of the lower teeth and this type of misalignment can only be seen on the anterior teeth or the sides.
In some cases, people have teeth which are spaced, and this can affect the anterior or the entire dental formula. The teeth look like they are few in the mouth and you might even think somebody had some of their teeth removed.
These are just the common misalignment problems, but there are a few others. Teeth misalignment can be corrected, and there are many ways to fix it but because many people are self-conscious about wearing traditional braces, they avoid treatment.
Effects of misalignment
Some misalignment prevents you from biting or chewing food because you may feel pain or discomfort. In this type of scenario, the affected individual will avoid eating as much as possible, and this may result in poor nutrition, and nutrition-related diseases may set in.
Oral health is compromised. When the teeth are overlapping, they form crannies and nooks that prevent a toothbrush and floss from getting between them, and food particles and drinks are trapped inside making it an excellent breeding ground for bacteria which cause tooth decay and eventually tooth loss.
Mouth breathing. When an individual has an overjet misalignment, it prevents the lips to close, and you breathe through the mouth.
It affects speech. When teeth hinder movement of tongue-speech is also changed, and an individual might feel embarrassed if they can’t speak openly.
It lowers self-esteem. You become conscious of how people are looking at you and make feel embarrassed because of your crooked teeth. When an individual has self-esteem issues, they tend to close-up and avoid interaction.
Causes of misalignment
Misalignment doesn’t have any specific causative agent and here are some of the things that may cause misalignment.
- Injuries caused by accidents to your jaw can misalign your teeth.
- Genetic factors like malocclusion run in your family, and you inherited the trait.
- Tooth loss. When a child loses her/his tooth early, it alters the arrangement of the teeth when it starts to regrow. When an adult loses teeth, the other teeth respond by closing up the gap left the lost teeth and eventually gaping occurs.
- Dental procedure going wrong like crowns, braces or dental fillings might alter the arrangement of your teeth.
- Bad habits like thumb sucking for children if prolonged it may cause teeth to shift from their normal position.
Braces were the best alternative to correct misalignment, but it takes longer to fix the problem and causes oral hygiene issues. Dentists saw these concerns brought about by braces and came up with Invisalign.
Invisalign is the dental treatment of misalignment without metal braces. It involves placing clear plastic aligner designed as teeth on your natural teeth to reposition them. This aligner is custom made to fit individual dental structure.
Being developed in the ninety’s Invisalign has been improving to cater for more complex teeth misalignment. It will correct 90% of teeth misalignment without anyone knowing you are wearing an Invisalign aligner.
Why should you consider Invisalign?
When Invisalign was being created, they wanted it to address the pitfalls of braces and offer a more effective but comfortable misalignment treatment. Here are some of the advantages of using Invisalign.
- It is clinically proven to do what it claims. It shows you that Invisalign is tested already, safe and effective.
- Easy to wear. Invisalign is removed after 22 hours, and you don’t need your dentist to do it because you can quickly remove and replace the aligner.
- Custom-made. Before you are given a set of your Invisalign aligners, some tests are done to determine how your dental structures are shaped to make you an aligner that fits you. A 3-D Invisalign aligner is then made to fit your teeth correctly.
- Comfortable. Unlike braces which are painful while placing and uncomfortable while on the teeth, you wouldn’t feel anything when you wear Invisalign.
- Easy to clean your teeth. Invisalign allows you to remove it, brush and floss your teeth regularly. It doesn’t hinder your daily oral routine, and this is what braces couldn’t offer.
- Invisible. When you have your aligner on nobody will know as it is transparent and fits well on your teeth. If you are sensitive about your looks, then Invisalign is the right choice for you.
- Treatment takes a shorter time than the braces. It can take at least three months for you to see changes.
Not everyone is a good candidate for Invisalign. Those who can’t stand to stay with the aligner have bridge work, need to rotate the canines and molars, and back tooth bites are not the best candidate for Invisalign. Unlike braces, Invisalign is suitable for those who engage in sports activities on a regular basis since it can be removed before playing.
Invisalign might be a little bit costly compared to braces because of their unique features that make life easy and full of smiles. It all depends on what you are looking for, talk with your dentist or orthodontist about if Invisalign is right for you.