Crowded Teeth: How Do I Get Dental Crowding Properly Fixed?
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Table of Contents
- What is Dental Crowding?
- Crowded Teeth Grades
- Teeth Crowding Causes
- Signs of Crowded Teeth
- Crowded Teeth Health Risks
- Crowded Teeth Treatment
- Can Byte Treat Crowded Teeth?
- Crowded Teeth FAQs
All cases of crowded teeth are different. Some are more serious than others. Sometimes, the best way to fix crowded teeth is to work with a dentist and orthodontist on a series of extractions, spacers, and braces.
But sometimes, crowded teeth can be fixed at home with aligners. You'll still need a dental expert to supervise your progress, but this method could save you time and money.
What is Dental Crowding (or crowded teeth)?
The Farlex Partner Medical Dictionary defines crowding as a condition in which the teeth are so crowded that they bunch, overlap, or twist.
In a healthy mouth, the sides of all teeth touch. In a mouth with dental crowding, some teeth are too far forward, back, or sideways.
Are There Different Grades of Crowded Teeth?
Dentists can help you determine just how crowded your teeth are. The more severe your case, the more significant treatment you might need.
Mild Dental Crowding
Moderate Dental Crowding
Severe Dental Crowding
What Causes Teeth Crowding?
Teeth can be crowded together for various reasons, and some can't be controlled.
Teeth can crowd due to the following:
- Heredity: Genes are responsible for most cases of tooth crowding, experts say. If most of your family photos show smiles marred by crowding, you will likely deal with the same problem too.
- Illness and injury: If you're hit in the face, your jaw can move out of alignment and change the position of your teeth. Some mouth and jaw tumors can also shift tooth placement.
- Childhood habits: Prolonged bottle feeding or thumb sucking can contribute to tooth crowding.
- Poor dental care: Loose or missing teeth, improperly fitting crowns, and more can all cause changes in tooth position.
- Changing teeth: Losing your baby teeth early, growing extra teeth, or having teeth that are too large could cause crowding.
What are the Signs of Crowded Teeth?
If you have crowded teeth, you may notice the issue when you look in the mirror. But you may also have subtle signs that indicate your teeth aren't nesting together as they should.
Crowded teeth signs include the following:
- Difficulty cleaning your teeth: Floss gets stuck and breaks. And bristles from your toothbrush stick between your teeth.
- Stuck food: After you eat, tiny bits of food stick in the crowded spots.
- Advanced decay: Some experts believe that crowding can lead to cavities. It's hard to clean hidden spots, and that can make your oral health worse.
- Whistling sounds: Air can move in unusual ways through your teeth when you talk, leading to strange noises.
Can Crowded Teeth Cause Health Risks?
Significantly crowded teeth can cause the following problems:
How Do Dentists Treat Crowded Teeth?
In a healthy mouth, your upper and lower jaws nest together. When something ruins that close relationship, experts refer to the issue as malocclusion. In severe cases, it can cause significant health issues.
If you've been assessed by a dentist or orthodontist, and you know you have severe malocclusion, you might need an expert's help to get better. They may use the following treatment approaches:
In severe cases of crowding, doctors may need to remove some teeth to make room for others. This is a significant step, and it isn't always necessary.
Young children might benefit from this help. If a dentist can remove baby teeth and allow adult teeth to break through, the child may have fewer crowding issues.
After teeth are removed or jaws are shifted, those crowded teeth must be pushed into the proper places. And often, this is a significant correction. Big gaps can remain after teeth are pulled. Sometimes, the remaining teeth are twisted or turned.
Orthodontists glue brackets onto the teeth, and they connect all the teeth with wires. The wires get shorter and shorter in a series of appointments. Customers can't make these shifts on their own. They must visit the office to complete the work.
Braces can be quite expensive. It's not uncommon for customers to spend $5,000 or more. And most people who have braces must wear them for years to fix crowded teeth.
Clear plastic trays snap onto your teeth and apply gentle pressure to shift teeth into position. Treatment plans move quickly, so you're back to a clear smile in no time. And you can remove the trays for cleaning, so your risk of cavities is reduced.
Clear aligners are appropriate for mild-to-moderate cases of crowded teeth. If your problem is severe, you might need a different type of care.
Dentists glue tooth-colored plates to the front of your teeth. They could place them over the gaps in your teeth and cover the problem in no time.
Veneers are durable and quick, but if you drink lots of coffee and tea, they could be discolored.
Can Byte Fix my Crowded Teeth?
Imagine that only a few crowded teeth mar your smile. Maybe they're bunched right up in the center, where everyone can see them. Perhaps you can feel them when you run your tongue over your smile. You can fix minor tooth crowding like this at home.
Doctor-monitored, at-home aligners put you in touch with a team of dental experts. They will do the following:
- Assess your smile. You’ll send in impression from your at-home dental impression kit, so they can assess how your teeth look now.
- Plan for the future. A doctor looks over the impressions and determines how your teeth should move.
- Create aligners. Your team makes a series of plastic trays that slide over your teeth. Periodically, you swap out these trays for new sets. Slowly, your teeth take up new positions. Experts say aligners can move your teeth about 0.3 millimeter per tray.
Telemedicine techniques keep you in touch with your treatment team. You still have appointments with an expert, but they're done online.
This medicine model cuts expenses, meaning aligners often come with smaller price tags. You might pay $2,000 for aligners, which is less than half of what you might pay for braces.
Aligners can also work quickly when compared to braces. If your crowding issue is mild, you may only need the tools for a few months, not years.
Crowded Teeth Frequently Asked Questions
What happens if your teeth are crowded?
Are crowded teeth common?
Does teeth crowding get worse with age?
How long does it take to fix crowded teeth?
What does teeth crowding feel like?
Will crowded teeth fall out?
Crowding. The Free Dictionary by Farlex.
Bad Teeth? Here’s When You Can and Can’t Blame Your Parents. (September 2017). The Conversation.
Influence of Tooth Crowding on the Prevalence of Dental Caries. (2010). Annales Academiae Medicae Stetinensis.
Types of Malocclusion. (May 2017). Cigna.
Combined Effect of Anterior Malocclusion and Inadequate Lip Coverage on Dental Trauma in Primary Teeth. (February 2012). Dental Traumatology.
Effect of Malocclusion on the Self-Esteem of Adolescents. (October 2017). Journal of Orthodontic Science.
Malocclusion and Orthodontics. (October 2018). University of Michigan.
Malocclusion. (September 2018). Merck Manual.