Warning Signs That You Need Braces

Crooked teeth aren’t the only reason to seek orthodontic treatment. As Dr. Chad Carver and the team at Stellar Family Orthodontics know, you can still benefit from braces if you have straight teeth. At our offices in Mukilteo and Mill Creek, Washington, Dr. Carver can perform a full orthodontic exam to determine whether you need braces or Invisalign®.

A visit to the orthodontist is always the best way to figure out how orthodontics can improve your smile, but it’s not the only way. 

Here are a few warning signs that you need braces or Invisalign:

You have jaw pain.

When your teeth don’t fit together correctly, it puts pressure on the joints and muscles in your jaw. Without treatment, malocclusion — a bad bite — can lead to chronic jaw pain. Orthodontic treatment options, such as braces or Invisalign, realign your bite for a more comfortable fit. 

If you have jaw pain, clicking, or popping when you open your mouth, talk to Dr. Carver about your options.

Chewing and biting are painful.

If you’re constantly biting the inside of your cheeks when you chew, you may have misaligned teeth. Having crooked teeth distorts your bite, leading to an uneven amount of pressure on your teeth when you chew. Foods that are difficult to chew, like caramels and apples, are especially hard to eat with misaligned teeth and malocclusion.

You’re constantly getting cavities.

Crooked teeth are harder to clean than straight teeth. Even if you brush and floss religiously, slightly rotated teeth hide bacteria and food debris. When plaque — a sticky film of bacteria — builds between your teeth, it releases harmful toxins that lead to tooth decay. 

Getting orthodontic treatment can help you avoid costly fillings, crowns, and other restorative treatments in the future.

You have cracked or chipped teeth.

Cracks and chips in your smile are telltale signs that your teeth don’t fit together properly. A balanced bite distributes weight evenly when you chew or rest your jaw. When you have crooked teeth, certain teeth receive more pressure than they should. Over time, this can lead to chipped teeth, cracked teeth, and even broken teeth.

Your teeth are protruding outward.

Protruding teeth aren’t just an aesthetic problem. They actually put you at risk of serious mouth injuries. Protruding teeth stick out over your lips, so they don’t have your lips for protection. If you fall, get hit in the face while playing sports, or run into a door at home, you’re risking tooth damage. To avoid chips, cracks, or even tooth loss, talk to Dr. Carver about your orthodontic options.

You have crooked teeth.

Having crooked teeth is the most common reason people seek orthodontic treatment. If you’re noticing your teeth becoming increasingly crooked with age, now may be the right time to ask Dr. Carver about braces or clear aligners.

Still not sure if you need braces? Schedule a free consultation with the orthodontic team at Stellar Family Orthodontics today to learn more!