By Dr. Browning
September 28, 2012
Category: Mouth Care
Tags: Orthodontics  

Orthodontics is a branch of dentistry that deals with properly aligning teeth and jaws to improve facial structure, tooth function, appearance and overall health.  Whether acquired or inherited, Dr. Brent Browning, your dentist in Houston, can help properly align your teeth and jaws—whether you are a child, teenager or adult. More and more adults are also wearing braces and undergoing orthodontic treatments to correct minor problems and to improve their smiles – not just children.

Why do I need Dental Braces?

Dental braces are a type of orthodontic treatment used to correct teeth that are crowded, crooked, protruding, out of alignment or have irregular spacing.  By moving your teeth into their ideal position, dental braces help to create a more attractive and healthier smile for children and adults.  When teeth are crooked or crowded, it is often difficult to keep them clean.  If brushing and flossing cannot be properly completed, tooth decay, gum disease and even tooth loss can occur.

An improper bite can also significantly interfere with your ability to chew and speak properly, as well as cause abnormal wear to the enamel of your teeth.  If your teeth protrude and/or your upper and lower teeth do not come together properly, jaw problems may arise as well.  By using braces to keep your teeth in proper alignment and allowing better oral hygiene, dental braces do more than just keep your smile looking good, they help keep your mouth healthy and functioning. 

Understanding Acquired and Inherited Malocclusions

Acquired malocclusions can be caused by trauma to the mouth, sucking of the thumb, finger or pacifiers, tonsils and adenoids that obstruct the airway, mouth breathing or premature loss of primary or permanent teeth.  These instances of malocclusions can be prevented, but if they do occur your dentist can create an appropriate treatment plan for realigning the teeth, lips and jaws.  

While acquired malocclusions are created by outside sources such as trauma inherited malocclusions determine how well your teeth fit together and are determined by attributes such as tooth and jaw size.  Some people may inherit large teeth and small dental arches or small teeth with large dental arches.  Orthodontics can be used to alter this inheritance, giving you an attractive smile.  

Bite problems not only affect the alignment of the teeth, but also facial development and appearance as well. Most cases are mild, or cosmetic in nature, but in some people the condition can be so severe that they can’t eat or speak properly.  The following symptoms may signal a poor bite:

  • Difficulty chewing
  • Facial muscle or jaw pain
  • Permanent teeth coming in out of their normal position
  • Problems with biting the cheek
  • Speech difficulties

Contact Dr. Brent Browning, your Houston, TX dentist, today for more information on orthodontics and how they can help re-align your teeth to give you your desired smile. Dr. Browning will be able to advise you on the best course of treatment for improving your smile.


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