It is no secret that Americans care a lot about how their teeth look. It has been estimated that almost all Americans (99.7%) think having a good looking smile will help people with their social life. Almost three in four people in the United States think a bad looking smile will hurt their career. About a third of people worry about how their smile looks. Many of these people go to cosmetic dentists for teeth straightening or veneers. After the cosmetic benefits, there are some benefits from teeth straightening that many people do not know about.
- Straight teeth equal healthier gums. When a person’s mouth is too crowded or are spaced too far apart, the gums are often red and inflamed. People do nit like the way their gums look but there is usually a cause that is much more serious than an unattractive smile. Redness and inflammation in gums is s sign of periodontal disease. If you have your teeth straightening done with invisalign or some other system, you can protect your mouth.
- Straight teeth are easier to clean. One reason you are better able to protect your mouth from dangerous periodontal disease is that it is much easier to brush and floss straight teeth. You have a better chance of getting all of the plaque off of your teeth so you avoid tooth decay that comes along with plaque build up.
- People with straight teeth have less wear and tear. When the bottom teeth are crowded in, often one or more will jut out and this causes it to come in contact with the teeth on the upper jaw. This causes the chewing process to be less effective and efficient, which will lead to wear and tear and will break down the enamel on the teeth. When the enamel wears down, the result is teeth that are much weaker and easier to break.
- Teeth straightening can prevent dental injuries. When the mouth is crowded, it is much easier to break the teeth during any kind of accident. When the teeth are neatly placed in the mouth, this is much less likely. It is just more easy to knock out a tooth that is jutting out than to get one that is not.
- People with straight teeth suffer from fewer headaches. When teeth are crooked, they can place more stress on the person’s gums and the jaw, which can lead to headaches, face and neck pain. This is because the teeth actually cause a misalignment in the jaw. This is a common problem that can often be addressed with teeth straightening.
- People with straight teeth have higher self esteem. Given the high priority people place on having a good looking smile, it should come as no surprise that people who have teeth that are more straight and look better are going to have higher self esteem than people who have crooked teeth. There has been a lot of research done on the impact a good looking smile can have on a person’s self esteem. Having a higher self esteem leads to better mental health and less stress. Other research shows that when people are happy with their smile, they show it off more often. The simple act of smiling can make people happier. They say when you smile, your brain releases endorphins that make you feel better.
- People with straight teeth are healthier. As has been noted, when teeth are more straight, it is easier to clean them and get rid of any plaque before it has a chance to build up. When teeth are neglected, the plaque builds up and this leads to bleeding gums and possible tooth loss. The American Dental Association has also linked these problems to increased infection rates, which can make a person become very sick. This has even been linked to heart disease, pneumonia, diabetes and increased chance of stroke.
It is easy to not see the link between overall health and dental health. That is unfortunate because the mouth is close to some very vital parts of our body. An infection that begins in the gums can easily go to other areas such as the brain and the heart. Therefore, good oral hygiene and straight teeth can make a big difference.