Orthodontics is the formal name of the dental specialty concerned with the diagnosis, prevention, interception, guidance, and correction of malocclusion. Malocclusion or “bad bites” is one of the most common dental problems.

Malocclusion can happen in several different ways:

  1. Your teeth are too large for your jaw, causing your teeth to crowd together or your teeth are too small, causing them to leave spaces between your teeth
  2. You had habits like thumb sucking or tongue thrusting while growing up
  3. You lost a tooth and the remaining teeth moved to fill that gap
  4. During growth, your jaws overdeveloped or underdeveloped

If left untreated, malocclusion can cause several health problems. Apart from causing dental problems such as decay in teeth, gum disease and receding gums, damage to the tooth enamel and existing dental restorations and tooth loss, it can also affect how you chew food or how you speak. It can also lead to TMD, temporomandibular joint disorders, which are disorders that affect your jaw joint and surrounding muscles and ligaments. Research has also found connections between malocclusion and self-esteem. Some studies show that people who have malocclusion avoid social situations and relationships because they are self-conscious about their appearance.

The purpose of orthodontic treatment is to create a healthy bite—well aligned teeth that properly meet opposing teeth in the opposite jaw. Braces and aligners are the “appliances” most used to guide your teeth into their proper positions. Retainers preserve and stabilize the results of your orthodontic treatment.

Here at Layton Lakes Dental, we offer clear aligner therapy using Invisalign. Clear aligners are plastic aligners that go over your teeth and gradually move them into their right position within the jaw. The benefits of clear aligners are that they can be maintained very easily, are not conspicuous and do not prevent you from enjoying your favorite foods. Dr S has spent countless hours in continuing education to be able to offer her patients the best in clear aligners.

Orthodontics can help people of any age achieve a healthy and beautiful smile. Call us to schedule your free smile consult!