3 Functional Benefits Of Orthodontic Treatment

Is your dentist recommending that you get orthodontic treatment? Some people may balk at orthodontic treatment if their teeth are fairly straight. However, orthodontic work isn't just for aesthetics, there are functional benefits as well. Here are three ways orthodontic treatment can improve your oral health and overall health.

You Reduce Teeth Grinding

Ideally, tooth cusps in one arch should fit together snugly in the pits of the opposing arch. However, if your teeth are slightly misaligned or crooked, then the opposing teeth may have extra stress on certain areas of enamel that they shouldn't. Besides the added stress, people with crooked teeth tend to experience bruxism (teeth grinding). Teeth grinding can cause a host of issues, such as damaged enamel, headaches, earaches, muscle aches, and TMJ dysfunction. If you get orthodontic treatment to correct misaligned teeth, you'll reduce the side effects of bruxism.

You Prevent Sleep Apnea

While structures of the oral cavity, like the tongue, tonsils, and adenoids, can collapse and cause sleep apnea, a narrow palate can contribute to this problem. Your teeth may be fairly straight, but if have a narrow arch, it can be harder to breathe well through your nose. Sleep apnea is a serious condition; it not only makes you fatigued during the daytime hours, but it can increase your risk of cardiovascular issues. Your dentist can help you prevent and correct sleep apnea with an orthodontic expander. While expanders are best used in children as their bones are growing, adults can also find success with them. If orthodontic treatment helps your sleep apnea, then you may not need a CPAP device or intraoral mouthguards anymore!

You Decrease Your Chances of Cavities

When you floss, the thread should easily snap in and out as you between your teeth. However, if you have crowded or crooked teeth, there may be some areas where it's difficult for you to get the floss into. If you can't floss or brush these areas easily, it's easier for plaque to become lodged there, build up, and develop into a cavity. If you get orthodontic treatment, then teeth won't just be aligned well, they will be easier to keep clean. While orthodontic treatment is an investment, consider the costs of treatments that you might need to fix extensive decay. While fillings can help small areas of decay, deeper cavities may require inlays, crowns, root canals, or even extractions/implants.

Reach out to a dentist in your area today to learn more about orthodontic treatments and their functional benefits.