My Teeth Aren’t Straight—What Are My Options?

If your teeth are crooked or crowded, you may think that braces are your only option to create a straight and beautiful smile. And while braces are certainly one option, they cosmetic_dentistaren’t the only option. “Most adults don’t want to wear braces for years, followed by a retainer for another period of time,” says Dr. Carol Ford from her Phoenix dental office.

There is a faster way to have straight teeth—veneers or veneers combined with crowns. How fast? Once you make the appointment to have veneers, there will be one appointment to shape the teeth, and a few weeks later, your permanent veneers will be fitted. “So you can go from crooked teeth to a beautiful smile in about two to three weeks,” says Dr. Ford.

Adults often wonder if it’s worth it to straighten crooked teeth or space overcrowded teeth. After all, an adult has made it this far without problems; why not just let the teeth stay the way they are? “Straight teeth are not just a cosmetic factor,” Dr. Ford says, “Crooked teeth, overcrowded teeth, over- or under- bite, aren’t stand-alone problems, they cause dental hygiene and digestive problems as well.”

The website Everydayhealth.com says, “Without proper treatment for these problems, you may be at higher risk of cavities, gum disease, ear pain, headaches, and chewing and speech problems.” That’s a lot of risk to leave untreated.

Permanent teeth grow in straight or crooked, and if they are crooked, your dentist will help you decide if the rotation of the tooth from the correct alignment is mild or severe. “If the tooth rotation is mild, then veneers are a good solution,” says Dr. Ford. “The tooth surface is prepared to accept a veneer that makes the tooth look straight,” Dr. Ford says. “The veneer fits directly onto the tooth, but the re-shaping gives a much better look,” she adds.

If the tooth rotation is severe, then the tooth can be crowned as a method of aligning the tooth with other teeth. Crowns can be made to match veneers, so an entire mouth of crooked-looking teeth can be transformed in a short time. A mix of crowns and veneers can create a “dazzling smile and a healthier mouth at the same time,” smiles Dr. Ford.

The American Dental Association adds one slight caution with veneers. Just like your own teeth, veneers can stain. “Your dentist may recommend that you avoid some foods and beverages that may stain or discolor your veneers such as coffee, tea or red wine.”  That’s also true with your own teeth, and taking care of veneers is no harder than taking care of your own teeth.

“The fast results and great looks are more than worth it,” says Dr. Ford. “And the hygienic advantages make it more likely you’ll take better care of your teeth as well,” she adds.

 

 

 

URL/Links:

Every day health quote: http://www.everydayhealth.com/dental-health/you-and-your-dentist/are-you-too-old-for-braces.aspx

ADA: http://www.ada.org/3000.aspx?currentTab=1

 

 

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  1. […] that are slightly overcrowded or turned can be restructured to be straight.  A crowned tooth is always measured in relationship to the existing teeth. By […]

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