Many people think of a misaligned smile as an aesthetic issue, and they want to perfect their dental alignment in order to achieve a beautiful smile. While this is undoubtedly true, our Saint Louis dentists are here to tell you that, in addition, patients who have poorly aligned bites can end up dealing with a range of oral health issues as a result. Keep reading to learn more…
It is very common for patients to have some kind of dysfunction with their bites; you may find that your top teeth jut out too far or that your bottom teeth actually pass in front of your top teeth when you close your mouth. Additionally, you may be able to feel that your molars do not fit together comfortably when you chew with your back teeth.
In the short-term, these kinds of bite issues can be annoying, because they make it difficult for patients to bite into tough foods and to chew comfortably. An uneven bite can also change how the patient smiles and speaks.
If these types of problems are left untreated, they can go from inconvenient to straight up unhealthy in a short period of time. An uneven bite puts you at risk of developing bruxism, or chronic dental grinding. Bruxism puts an immense amount of pressure on your dental enamel, and can make your teeth more susceptible to cracking and chipping.
Additionally, poorly aligned bite surfaces often lead to TMJ problems. Your temporomandibular joints connect your lower jaw to your skull. Because bite problems cause you to unconsciously change how you bite and chew, your TMJs can become aggravated. TMJ problems manifest as pain in the head/neck/jaw, clicking and popping noises when you chew, and even limited jaw mobility.
Our Saint Louis dentists are here to help you identify the nature of your bite issue, so that we can then effectively treat it. As always, you can reach out to our team by calling our office, or by using the Contact Us page on our website!