Unfortunately, the majority of people will not have straight teeth without orthodontic treatment. However, crowded teeth are a very common problem orthodontists treat. Not only is crowded teeth an everyday issue with children, but adults are affected as well. For patients with crowded teeth (malocclusion), those problem areas provide a safe haven for bacteria to grow and live in, and brushing and flossing them can be challenging.
Crowded Teeth Are More Prone To:
- The potential for gum disease
- Problems with the mouth’s bite
- Problems with chewing
- Problems with TMJ
- Problems with face shape
Crowding Can Be Caused By the Following:
- A baby tooth that has not shed, because it retains its position in the mouth, causing the adult tooth to erupt in an unusual position
- Premature loss of a baby tooth can also cause the adult tooth to erupt in an abnormal position
- Extra (supernumerary) teeth that impede on the eruption of the adult teeth
- A difference in the length of the upper or lower arches
The baby teeth are the guide for the adult teeth to come in, and without that guidance, teeth most likely will erupt in incorrect areas causing crowding. There are several ways to treat crowding of teeth. Wires called lingual archwires can be placed to hold specified teeth in place so they maintain or create space. After space is created, removable appliances that integrate springs and retractors can be used. The best route is using fixed appliances, such as nickel-titanium wires and palatal expanders to correct the malocclusion.
In severe cases patients may need to have teeth removed for space or jaw surgery, in conjunction with braces, to alleviate crowding. Treatment time varies with each individual and the severity of their case, and Dr. Anthony Lovrovich will determine the duration of the treatment plan.