If crooked teeth are impacting your daily life, you should consider getting treatment. If you have difficulty chewing or biting your food, or if your teeth affect the way that you speak, you may be a candidate for jaw surgery or braces.
If you don’t like the way your teeth look because they’re crowded or rotated, orthodontic treatment can straighten out your smile.
The American Association of Orthodontists recommends that every child be evaluated to see if they need braces no later than age 7.
The ideal time to get braces is between the ages of 9 to 14. But you’re never too old to get braces, and more adults are opting to seek orthodontic treatment later in life.
Signs that you or your child may be a candidate for braces include:
- Crowded or misaligned teeth
- Jaws that shift or click
- A history of thumb-sucking or having buck teeth
- Difficulty chewing or biting down
- Jaws that don’t close neatly or create a seal when the mouth is at rest
- Difficulty speaking certain words or making certain sounds
- Mouth breathing
For most people, braces are the safest and most effective way to permanently straighten their teeth. If your teeth are only slightly crooked or just a bit crowded, an orthodontist-prescribed retainer may be enough to get them straight.
You shouldn’t attempt to straighten your teeth by yourself. Work with an orthodontist to find the right solution for straightening your teeth.
*This is an abridged version of an article from HealthLine
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