Five Signs that a Child, Teen, or Adult Needs Braces
Although these fall in no particular order of importance, I’ll highlight five signs you may need braces, regardless of your age.
You may need braces if:
1.) You have an uncomfortable bite. Does your bite feel funny? Do you bite down and your teeth don’t fit together? Do you bite down and have a big space between your upper and lower teeth (an overbite)? Can you put your tongue between your upper and lower teeth? If you answered, “yes,” to any of these questions, you may need braces. You may also feel comfortable eating and chewing, bit that large space between your upper and lower teeth puts the teeth in a position where they can’t protect themselves that well (in addition to being unaesthetic). When the teeth fit together nicely, they protect themselves as you move your jaw forwards or backwards. When you have a large overbite, the teeth aren’t protected. Another bite issue is an underbite–your lower teeth stick out further than your top ones. With an underbite, it’s hard to chew, and your teeth are susceptible to trauma and damage.
2.) Food gets stuck in between your teeth. Does chicken or steak get stuck in between a couple of teeth? If so, it usually means you have a “food pocket,” which forms when you have a small space between one tooth and another. That space causes food, usually meat, to get stuck because you’re chewing and grinding harder on meat. It will also more easily get wedged in between your teeth. If you don’t floss often, it may sit there for days or weeks, before the saliva takes care of it. Saliva can take a long time to flush it out and remove it. In the meantime, bacteria attack this food and create a “nest” for plaque to live in. You then develop problems like cavities and gum inflammation or recession. Underneath your gums, you’ll develop bone defects, and your bone will slowly fade away.
3.) Your teeth are crowded. Are your lower front teeth crowded? From a functional standpoint, if your teeth are crowded and overlapped, it’s even difficult for a professional hygienist to ensure your teeth surfaces stay clean. When they’re crowded, there may be two, three, or four surfaces contacting other teeth, and creating pockets and wedges more difficult to clean. Crowded teeth should be addressed to ensure you maintain the health of your gums and bones.
4.) You have speech issues. Have you been concerned about how your child’s speech is developing and how they pronounce certain words? The position of their teeth may affect his speech. Some of letters are difficult to say if the teeth are in a bad position. If he has a large overbite, the teeth are crowded or inclined; it may be difficult to get his tongue between the teeth. If your son or daughter has any speech issues, they may stem from the position of the teeth.
5.) You have difficulty sleeping. Do you wake up after sleeping and still feel tired? Do you find yourself falling asleep when you sit down, whether it’s to watch a show after work or do homework during the day? If you answered, “Yes,” to these questions, consider these signs you didn’t get a good night’s sleep. For many, it can be sleep apnea. For some, sleep apnea’s a neurological disorder. But for most people, it’s an airway disorder. Sleep apnea is treated different ways depending on your age. For a child, the airway is widened to increase the volume of air taken in–no appliance needed. But, many adults need a CPAP machine to position their jaws and maximize air flow.
Original Article: http://www.beecroftortho.com/2014/02/need-braces/
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17885 NW Evergreen Parkway, Suite 200
Beaverton, OR 97006