Crowded Teeth: Causes, Risks, and Treatment Options

Issues with crowded teeth or misaligned teeth will not only ruin your pretty smile. It will also affect your overall health. To deal with crowded teeth, it is important that you know everything about its causes, the risks it poses, and how to treat them effectively.

What Are Crowded Teeth?

Crowded teeth, also known as dental crowding or overcrowding, occurs when your mouth does not have enough space for your permanent teeth to grow. This will lead to misalignment and cause the teeth to overlap.

Overcrowding may either be mild, moderate, or severe. This depends on how many teeth you have and how small your jaw is:

  • Mild dental crowding – when one of the anterior teeth (any of the front six teeth) on your upper or lower jaw is slightly rotated
  • Moderate dental crowding – when two or three of the anterior teeth on your upper or lower jaw overlaps
  • Severe dental crowding – when most of the anterior teeth on your upper or lower jaw are overlapping

What Causes Crowded Teeth?

The causes of dental crowding may be from a variety of factors:

  • When you lose a primary tooth too soon, it leaves a gap for other growing teeth to move and fill in the empty spaces it left behind.
  • Due to genetics, some people may be born with a smaller jaw which may be the cause of dental crowding or overcrowded teeth.
  • If your teeth are larger than your jaw, they will not fit correctly and will tend to twist or overlap with each other.
  • Over-retained baby teeth may hinder permanent teeth from properly erupting. This happens when your teeth loosen and tighten back again to the gums, blocking the permanent teeth from growing. This can be fixed by taking out the over-retained baby teeth. When left, over-retained baby teeth can lead to dental crowding.

Risks of Untreated Dental Crowding

Having perfect teeth can affect and improve your self-esteem and quality of life. Many oral health benefits come with it as well. For instance, straight teeth are easier to brush, floss, and clean, which leads to better and healthier oral hygiene. With this, you are less likely to develop oral infections and cavities.

If you are suffering from moderate to severe dental crowding, there is a higher chance for you to develop dental infections such as gum disease and tooth decay. This is because overlapping teeth are difficult to clean.

Poor oral hygiene results in bad oral health, which may eventually lead to general health complications and a weakened immune system.

Teeth Crowding Treatment

Dental crowding can cause you discomfort, pain, and perhaps even embarrassment. If left untreated, they could eventually cause serious health problems. Having a licensed orthodontist who knows how to fix crowded teeth is essential to taking care of your overall health. Here are the ways orthodontists treat dental crowding:

1. Invisalign

Invisalign is a clear plastic aligner that helps straighten the teeth. This is an effective method used by orthodontists to correct dental crowding. It can bring you your desired results with efficiency and speed. In addition, patients just love the subtle look of these clear aligners, which are more or less invisible.

If you’re wondering how long does Invisalign take for crowded teeth, the answer may differ depending on how severe the dental crowding is. If the dental crowding is not that severe, then Invisalign can fix the issue in about 6 to 12 months. People with severely crowded teeth may require a longer treatment plan.

2. Braces

There are several types of braces: lingual, metal, and ceramic. All of these forms can be very effective.

3. Extraction

When you have extremely crowded teeth, an extraction might be necessary. If you do need to undergo the procedure, your orthodontist may refer you to an oral surgeon qualified to do the extraction process.

4. Retainers

One of the ways to fix overcrowding is through the use of retainers. You will be provided with retainers to help keep your teeth in place for a perfect smile after the dental crowding treatment. Your teeth may gradually slip back to their original positions after some time, so it’s the retainer’s job to protect and maintain the results attained by orthodontic care.

If you are looking for the best dentist in Durango, CO, Sunrise Dentistry is home to trained and experienced dentists who know how to fix crowded teeth effectively. Contact us now!