Overcrowding and How We Can Help You

September 1, 2021

Overcrowding and How We Can Help YouOvercrowding, also known as dental crowding or crowded teeth, is a common dental condition that refers to when your teeth are unable to grow straight due to a lack of space. When this occurs, your teeth may press together, overlap, and twist out of alignment with some teeth being pushed behind or in front of other teeth.

There are three degrees in which overcrowding is diagnosed:

  • Mild – Mild overcrowding refers to only one tooth being affected and is slightly rotated in the upper or lower jaw.
  • Moderate – Moderate overcrowding is when two or three teeth rotate or overlap in the upper or lower jaw.
  • Severe – Severe overcrowding means several or the majority of the teeth overlap in the upper or lower jaw.

What causes overcrowding?

Teeth should grow straight without crowding or gaps, but we know that is not always the cause. Here are some common factors that can lead to overcrowding:

  • Abnormal tooth growth
  • Excess teeth
  • Genetics may cause teeth to be larger than your jaw can allow, or genetics may lead to a smaller jaw than average
  • Losing primary teeth too early may cause other teeth to shift into the empty space
  • Trauma and injury can fracture the jaw or lead to missing teeth which can cause teeth to shift in the healing process

Signs

If you are unsure if your teeth or your child’s teeth are crowded, there are some signs to look for that may indicate overcrowding, including:

  • Crooked teeth at unusual angles
  • Difficulty brushing and flossing
  • Jaw pain
  • Overlapping teeth
  • Trouble biting or chewing

Often overcrowding can be related to malocclusions or misalignments of the jaw which can lead to jaw pain, headaches, and a possible temporomandibular joint dysfunction (TMD).

Does overcrowding need to be treated?

If left untreated, overcrowding can lead to a variety of oral health problems:

Poor Hygiene

Overcrowded teeth that overlap or twist against other teeth can make it difficult to brush and floss properly, making it easy for plaque and bacteria to build up in the mouth and increases the risk of tooth decay, cavities, and bad breath.

Gum Disease

If plaque and bacteria do build up in an overcrowded mouth, this may lead to the development of gum disease. Signs of gum disease include a bad taste in the mouth, bleeding gums, loose teeth, swollen red gums, and gums that pull away from the teeth.

Malocclusions

Failure to correct crowding during childhood can lead to the jaw becoming misaligned in adulthood which can cause headaches, jaw pain, and potentially lead to jaw dysfunctions.

Speech Impediments

Overcrowded teeth can also cause speech difficulties as they can interfere with the ease and clarity of pronouncing certain words. This will depend on the location and severity of the overcrowding. Dental crowding may also cause whistling when talking as air moves through the teeth.

What are my treatment options?

The treatment for overcrowding will depend on the patient’s age and conditioning. Common treatment options for overcrowding include braces, aligners, extractions, and retainers. Braces are the most common treatment for overcrowding, though they can be the lengthiest of treatment options and requires frequent visits to our office to adjust the appliance accordingly. Braces apply constant pressure to your teeth to move them into their proper position.

Aligners, including clear ones such as Invisalign, can correct mild cases of overcrowding. These options are an alternative to traditional braces and are removable, but can be more costly as they need to be replaced every two weeks so that the teeth will shift properly throughout treatment.

In some cases, tooth extraction may be necessary for overcrowded teeth, but this is often only in cases of excess teeth. Once the tooth is extracted, we can discuss the best treatment method for you to help guide your teeth into proper alignment.

Retainers are often used after most treatment options for overcrowding to ensure your smile stays in place. Be sure to follow your doctor’s instructions to properly use and care for your retainers so you can get the most out of your treatment.

As experienced orthodontists, we strive to provide you with high-quality care and service. A straight smile doesn’t have to be only a dream…we are here to assist you in achieving a healthy, bright, and beautiful smile! For more information on overcrowding and how we can help or to schedule a consultation, contact Bracify 3D Orthodontics today.

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Dreading Braces? Invisalign May Be The Answer!

Dreading Braces? Invisalign May Be The Answer!Children and teenagers that require braces and other orthodontic devices often dread the very thought of it. One solution is the Invisalign program that fixes crooked teeth without unsightly wires causing metal smiles. Today’s braces are nothing like the past hardware that closely resembled medieval torture devices!

Invisalign is known for its invisible equipment and the effectiveness of the treatment. In fact, the company has developed a line completely devoted to the needs of teenagers’ orthodontics.

INVISALIGN: THE INVISIBLE BRACES

REMOVABLE AND LESS PAINFUL
One thing that teens really love about this teeth-straightening program is the fact that the apparatus can be removed while eating. Unlike traditional braces, there is no worry about getting food caught in the braces or feeling like they are overwhelming due to this sense of permanency. This method is also a lot less painful than metal braces and there is no difficult process to add and remove them. Your dentist will simply take a mold of your child’s teeth and Invisalign will do the rest. As the process moves forward, there may be some discomfort in the first few days of each new piece.

EFFECTIVE
Teenagers are still growing, and their mouths are no different than the rest of their bodies. Due to the ability to adjust the plastic trays that are used for the teeth alignment, any modifications can be done fairly easily. Also, if the teeth move again after the treatment is concluded, new plates can be ordered to make the necessary corrections. The alignment plates must be worn twenty-two hours of each day to be effective. The appeal of the process is that it delivers the same results as traditional braces without the pain and discomfort or the unsightly look of metal and wires. Invisalign can be brushed very easily and the aligners should be cleaned by your child each time they are removed before putting them back into the mouth.

COST
Both braces and Invisalign come with a significant cost, however, most insurances at least partially cover both options. Invisalign care can range from $3,500 to $8,000 depending on the amount of realignment that is required. Dental practices understand that this cost can be burdensome to many families and are happy to work with you to ensure that you receive the highest insurance reimbursement available to you. If your insurance does not cover the entire amount, and most will not, many practices offer financing or payment plans for the remaining balance. Talk with your dentist’s office to learn more.

The teen years are already filled with enough awkward moments, and braces do not have to add to the stress. With Invisalign Teen, the straightening process is one that is discrete and does not need to cause any embarrassment. Your child deserves a healthy and beautiful smile, and Invisalign delivers results without the pain and discomfort of metal braces. Talk to your family dentist today to learn more about Invisalign and how it can help your child gain a healthy and gorgeous smile!

For more information, contact Bracify 3D Orthodontics today.

Reasons You May Need an Orthodontist

Reasons You May Need an OrthodontistIt’s a fact of life that nobody wants to visit their dentist for a routine cleaning and have the appointment end with a recommendation to see an orthodontic specialist. Although such a situation may inherently sound scary, it probably is not going to be as frightening as it sounds. Most likely there might be a potential problem that can be treated with a touch of prevention rather than waiting for it to become exacerbated to the point of emergency. There are several reasons you may want to see an orthodontist or your dentist may recommend a consultation with an orthodontic specialist.

Reasons You May Need an Orthodontist

Braces and Fixed Appliances
Everybody knows how and why braces are prescribed to guide misaligned teeth back into their proper place, or with some specific forms of misalignment, a fixed appliance may be indicated to wear at night or for certain amounts of time during the day. Often, these corrections may seem like cosmetic fixes which aren’t very important from a true medical viewpoint. There are some cases in which crooked teeth may be functionally fine, but the patient wants an alignment service for the sake of looks, but more often the misaligned teeth are going to cause other problems which are more severe.

The fact is, your teeth are designed to work a specific way. When teeth aren’t properly aligned, they are not coming together properly, which means you might be causing damage the roots or your gums when chewing food. Teeth which are out of alignment can also be difficult to properly clean on a daily basis, leading to decay. You may feel you can live with these situations, and in all likelihood, they aren’t causing any immediate problems or cause for alarm. However, such problems never fix themselves but only get worse over time. It’s always better to treat such potential problems with prevention at your convenience rather than waiting for it to become a situation that requires you to stop everything else in your life for urgent care.

Headaches and Facial Pain
Unfortunately, one of the first signs of a problem with teeth is often overlooked as an unrelated symptom. Regular headaches and migraines are typically associated with stress rather than a tooth infection. It is possible to complain to your doctor for years and treat only the symptoms rather than finding the root cause of a toothache that causes the regular pain.

If your dentist recommends an orthodontist, don’t postpone it. Most likely, it’s just a small issue that needs to be reviewed and documented. If it is a larger problem, it’s always going to be better to treat it now rather than later. Contact Bracify 3D Orthodontics today to schedule an appointment!

Do I Need Braces?

Do I Need Braces?You see so many people with gorgeous, stunning teeth – and you have to wonder whether it is because of their lucky genetics or carefully placed orthodontics.

Orthodontics is a specialized area of dentistry that focuses on the diagnosis, prevention, and treatment of conditions affecting the alignment of the teeth and jaw.

How do you know if you need braces?

Is your smile not as straight as you would like it to be? Some people are simply born with crooked teeth, while others are affected by things like thumb sucking or pacifier usage.

Some issues your dentist may refer you to an orthodontist for include crowded teeth, underbite, open bite, crossbite, deep bite, spacing, wisdom teeth, impacted teeth, or missing teeth.

While you may have a normal bite, you may suffer from varying degrees of crowding or spacing, another factor that can lead to misaligned teeth. Crowding is a condition that causes the teeth to overlap, rotate, and in some cases, grow into the incorrect position in the mouth, or in more extreme cases, cause the tooth to become trapped in the bone.

The teeth and jaw relationship begins right from birth, so it’s important to pay close attention to a child’s jaw development. The American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) recommends that children should be seen for their first orthodontic consultation no later than age 7. By the time a child is seven years of age, it’s usually quite obvious to a dentist/orthodontist if a patient will have orthodontic problems, as most of the adult teeth should be present. This pre-screening process can help the orthodontist recommend preventative measures or advise on future procedures if necessary. Adults can seek treatment at any time, as it is never too late to correct their teeth.

Are there non-cosmetic benefits?

Among the many benefits of braces is the improvement of small breathing passages or difficulty breathing, especially through the nose. Some of the signs that indicate you have difficulties breathing through your nose area are mouth breathing – especially while sleeping, daytime sleepiness, snoring, and more.

In addition, braces can help solve the issues of speech impediments, jaw pain, difficulty chewing or eating, sleep apnea, snoring, grinding or clenching teeth, gum disease, and tooth decay.

Healthy teeth and gums, improved health, relief of breathing issues, and enhanced self-esteem are just a few of the many benefits of correcting your teeth with braces.

To find an orthodontist in your area, you can visit The American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) website. Ask around among your family and friends to see who they recommend or see themselves, or book an appointment with Bracify 3D Orthodontics to get their best recommendation.

5 Non-Sugary Halloween Treat Alternatives

5 Non-Sugary Halloween Treat Alternatives Option 2Halloween is just around the corner, which means an endless supply of sugary treats from trick or treating. Kids get a ton of candy from school parties, friends, neighbors, or relatives during Halloween. Sometimes the candy is so much it can last up to thanksgiving or Christmas time! However, the sugar crash is detrimental to you and your child’s teeth and overall health. More people are looking for creative alternatives to sugar to keep their kids from unhealthy sugary treats. Additionally, with the rising number of food allergies, it would be best to avoid traditional candy treats. Your child can develop cavities nearly overnight, and they would have to undergo expensive, painful dental restoration procedures, something that can be easily avoided.

Despite this, it is still important for those passing out treats and your kids to have fun and enjoy the festivities. You can still find a middle ground and enjoy Halloween in plenty of healthier and fun ways without being the Halloween Grinch. Here are non-sugary treats that your kids can enjoy for Halloween.

1. Go for Nonsticky Fruits

You can give your kids healthier alternatives to trick or treating by putting together a fun bag of yummy fruits. But this does not mean you give them dried fruit because it contains high sugar. Consuming large amounts of dry fruits could lead to weight gain, and the fruit can stick between teeth and erode the enamel. Instead of giving your kids sticky fruits, you can swap them with healthier fruits like:

  • Bananas
  • Blueberries
  • Apples
  • Grapes
  • Cranberries
  • Oranges

You can get creative with the fruits and ask your kids to help you make spooky fruits like bananas, strawberry ghosts, frightful fruit kebabs, or pumpkin oranges. Your kids will have fun helping you be creative with the fruit monsters while keeping your mind at ease, knowing they won’t indulge in the typical cavity-filled Halloween candies.

2. Low Sugar Chocolates and Candies

There are various zero-sugar chocolate companies that sweeten their chocolate bars with natural sweeteners that taste great and are healthier for the teeth. You can also try healthy alternatives to candy treats like Halloween pretzels, peanut butter cups, pudding cups, Goldfish, or other types of sugar-free snacks. You can find a variety of nonsugary treats in your local grocery store or online.

3. Bubbles for Trick or Treaters

Kids love blowing bubbles, and you can incorporate them in goody bags or as one-piece giveaways for the little ones as they come to trick or treat. They are a great way to keep the kids relaxed and distracted from the candy. Bubbles are inexpensive, and you can find various bubble bottles with different Halloween-themed designs like ghouls, ghosts, monsters, vampires, or mummies. Additionally, you can avoid some candies that cause choking hazards, like lollipops, tootsie rolls, and skittles.

4. Stickers

You can get an assortment of Halloween stickers as early as September and fill them up in your candy bowls. There is a variety to choose from, like glow-in-the-dark, scary, or goofy ones. You can buy a selection of them in bulk, and the little ones can select the ones that appeal to them. If you cannot find Halloween stickers, you can go with popular cartoon-themed characters that kids love these days.

5. Chilled Water Bottles

Kids get dehydrated easily from running around to collect their stash of candy. Chewing on sugary treats can make your kids pretty thirsty, and what better way to quench their thirst than with a cool bottle of water. Additionally, water helps to flush out or buffer the acid attack in the teeth brought about by eating candy. It may seem odd to hand out mini water bottles for treats, but parents and kids will highly appreciate them. Keep the mini water bottles in an ice cooler to keep them chilled and refreshing before passing them around. You can also quench their thirst with healthy juices to keep them re-energized.

Tips on Avoiding Sugar During Halloween

Kids learn through observation. If you consume candy in moderation or restrict yourself from overindulging, your kids will do the same. If you practice good habits and show your kids that candy is not something they should value, they will pick up on it and become less interested. You can allow them to eat some candy on Halloween but afterward, let them know the remaining candy can only be eaten at snack time and let them stick to the rules.

Keep your kids full by feeding them their favorite meal to keep them satisfied before going trick or treating. After eating, there is usually more saliva in the mouth, which will come in handy to protect their teeth from an acid attack that occurs after eating candy.

According to studies, kids denied candy completely tend to overindulge when they come across candy more than those who eat some candy regularly. Limit the amount of candy they can eat, and you can occasionally allow them to choose the type they like.

After binging on candy, ask your kids to drink lots of water right away and wait 30 minutes to an hour before brushing. This is because the acid in the sugary treats can temporarily weaken your child’s enamel. Therefore, brushing immediately after eating candy puts their teeth at irreparable enamel damage (chipping or breaking).

Here are some candies you should stay away from if you are not planning on avoiding candy altogether during Halloween:

Hard candy: This can break your tooth or harm your jaws when you try to bite on it. Additionally, it is highly concentrated in sugar, and as you suck on it, your teeth are constantly coated with sugar, exposing them to more damage. This greatly increases your child’s risk of tooth decay and gum disease.

Gummy worms: They are highly acidic and can wear out the enamel leading to tooth sensitivity and other dental issues.

Sticky or chewy candy: These sticks or wedges between teeth increase the risk of cavities.

Conclusion

The best way to stay away from candy is to keep it away from your home. Keep healthier options at home, educate your kids on the importance of avoiding candy, and remind them to continue flossing and brushing daily.

For more information please contact Bracify 3D Orthodontics.

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