Crooked teeth can have a damaging effect on self-esteem and can seriously lower a person’s confidence, particularly in social situations. Some people will not smile in public or will do so with a hand in front of their mouth. Others may refuse to show their teeth for photographs because of feeling self-conscious about their crooked teeth.
About this concern
Crooked teeth are also sometimes described as overcrowded, rotated, overlapping, wonky, crossed over, malaligned or irregular teeth.
Very few people are born with perfectly straight teeth. As such, crooked teeth are the most common reason for both children and adults to want orthodontic treatment to straighten their teeth.
Although common, crooked teeth range from mild to very severe. The number of teeth affected varies greatly amongst individuals. While some may only have a crossing over of the front two teeth, someone else may have a full mouth of crooked teeth.
The location of the crooked teeth also varies. They can be positioned at the front or the back and can affect either the upper teeth, the lower teeth, or both.
Whatever your concern, your Specialist Orthodontist at Neyo will work with you to find the best solution to straighten your teeth.
How common are crooked teeth?
Almost everybody will have some degree of tooth crookedness although the severity and position within the mouth varies enormously from person to person.
What causes crooked teeth?
Crooked teeth are a natural consequence of having an overcrowded dentition. Teeth become overcrowded when there is a discrepancy between the size of the teeth and the size of the jaws. As humans have evolved, our jaws have been getting smaller when compared to our ancestors. We no longer need bigger jaws because our diet has become softer and more processed. The smaller jaw can no longer accommodate all of the teeth a human has, so overcrowding develops.
Another very common cause of crooked teeth is a phenomenon known as late incisor crowding. Starting in the late teens or sometimes much later in life, the teeth drift towards the midline, causing the teeth at the front to get more crooked over time.
Although the wisdom teeth may have a small effect on the late crowding of incisors, it does not tell the whole story. People who have had wisdom teeth removed, or who are missing their wisdom teeth altogether, still experience late incisor crowding. Although a few theories exist, we don’t know exactly what causes it to happen. It can be very frustrating if you have perfectly straight teeth for many years only to see them become crooked later on in life.
There are other less common causes of crooked teeth, including narrow jaws, oversized teeth, the presence of extra teeth and issues during development of teeth such as dental trauma and premature removal of baby teeth.
What happen if you don’t treat crooked teeth?
Crooked teeth are a normal stage in the natural development of the teeth, and many of these issues will resolve as children transition into the permanent dentition.
Once all adult teeth have come through, usually at the age of 11-13 years, it is extremely unlikely that crooked teeth will straighten without intervention, and it is likely they may even get worse as you move through adulthood.
Although crooked teeth can have negative social and psychological consequences, it should be remembered that straightening crooked teeth is a cosmetic procedure, and the decision whether or not to have orthodontic treatment is a personal one.
What can be done to straighten crooked teeth?
The good news is that crooked teeth are very treatable, and your Specialist Orthodontist at Neyo has the skill, knowledge and experience to straighten even the most severe and complex cases of crooked teeth.
Your Orthodontist will work with you to find the best solution to straighten your teeth in a way that fits in with your lifestyle. As well as the more traditional metal “train track” braces, crooked teeth can be straightened with clear ceramic braces, and Invisalign clear aligners.
At what age should crooked teeth be treated?
For children, it is usually recommended to wait until all the baby teeth have been lost. This usually happens around the age of 12 although it is common to be much earlier or much later.
Crooked teeth can be treated at any stage of life and due to modern advances in technology and treatment options, adult orthodontics is now very convenient and socially accepted.
As soon as you’re ready, our in-house Orthodontist and Invisalign expert is looking forward to meeting you and getting to work on your teeth!