Here at Dillehay Orthodontics, we are proud to use traditional braces to create beautiful smiles for patients of all ages. Your smile can have a big impact on your life, whether you realize it or not! It’s the first thing people notice about you, and the feature they’re most likely to remember. Multiple studies have shown that an attractive smile can make you seem more approachable, trustworthy, and even more successful. While braces are incredibly effective at giving you a straighter, healthier smile, they also have a number of lesser-known benefits that go beyond your cosmetic appearance. Keep reading below to learn more about what braces have to offer you besides straight teeth and an improved smile!
The basics of orthodontic treatment with braces
In order to gain a better understanding of the many benefits braces offer, it helps to understand something about how they work. Traditional braces are made up of metal or ceramic brackets, wires, and tiny rubber bands or elastics. We attach the brackets to the surface of your teeth, then use the wires and elastics to tie them together. These components then work together to exert gentle pressure in specific directions. This pressure is what will gradually move your teeth into the desired positions over time.
Braces can also help reshape the jawline by dissolving bone that is then replaced with new bone growth. The new growth is better able to support the teeth in their straightened positions. Braces are one of the most efficient methods we have for straightening teeth, and are also an excellent option for correcting several common dental issues, including:
- difficulties with chewing or biting
- misaligned teeth or jaws
- excessive wear and tear of teeth
- teeth that have excessive spacing
- overlapping or crowded teeth
When you schedule your free consultation with one of our offices, Dr. Dillehay or Dr. J.K. will sit down with you and listen to any orthodontic concerns you have. You’ll receive a thorough examination of your teeth and jaw to determine if treatment is needed and if braces could be the right fit for you and your smile.
The benefits of braces beyond straight teeth
When your teeth and jaws are misaligned, it can have an impact on many aspects of your life. Your appearance and oral health may take a hit, and it can even affect everyday activities like eating and speaking. You may find that your oral hygiene routine is more difficult to maintain or is less effective than it once was. Some other lesser-known issues that braces are able to address and correct are:
Misaligned teeth and jaws can cause problems with biting and chewing food properly. If left untreated over time, this can lead to excessive wear and tear on your teeth, and can also lead to a weakening of the jaw. This can any exacerbate pain and irritation you are already experiencing.
Chewing your food is actually the very first step of the digestive process, and it’s also the most crucial one. Misaligned teeth that prevent you from chewing properly can have a detrimental effect on your digestive system, causing food to pass through much more slowly and ineffectively.
It may surprise you to learn that the alignment of your teeth and jaws can even affect the way you speak. For instance, misaligned teeth can influence the placement of the tip of the tongue, which is essential to properly form certain sounds, including ‘t’, ‘n’, and ‘d.’ Braces are often able to correct these kinds of speech issues by bringing the teeth and jaw into proper alignment, which allows the tongue to go where it needs to. Experienced orthodontists like Dr. Dillehay and Dr. J.K. can identify any speech issues you may have that are related to misalignment, and create an effective solution for you based on your particular orthodontic needs.
Teeth that are crooked, crowded or overlapping can make brushing and flossing effectively a challenge. When you’re unable to maintain a good oral hygiene routine, it can create the right conditions for plaque and bacteria to flourish. This increases your risk for dental problems like tooth decay, gingivitis, cavities, and gum disease. These are relatively common issues, but they’re also somewhat preventable. Braces move your teeth into more optimal positions, which makes it easier to keep your teeth and gums healthy and clean.
You may notice misalignment of the teeth and jaw affecting your jaw muscles and joints. While these joints will adapt to bad positioning if necessary, they will often compensate in a way that can cause damage. This is why we often see jaw issues and misaligned teeth presenting together in patients. There are several symptoms that can accompany improper jaw alignment, including:
- jaw that pop or “creak”
- pain in the jaw, neck, or shoulders
- sleep disorders
Dillehay Orthodontics are able to provide customized orthodontic treatment with braces that can minimize or eliminate issues like these by properly aligning your teeth and jaws. This gives you a smile that looks great and feels great, too!
Explore all the ways braces can benefit you with Dillehay Orthodontics
At Dillehay Orthodontics, straight teeth are just one part of what we do. We work hard to create beautifully aligned smiles that also function to their fullest potential. We know the difference an attractive, healthy smile can make, and we want to make the treatment process a rewarding, exciting experience for you! We’ve been providing the best in compassionate orthodontic care to families in Wichita and the surrounding communities for half a century, and our record speaks for itself. We take pride in providing our patients with the most state-of-the-art treatment techniques and equipment available in orthodontics today.
If you’re in Wichita, Pratt, Derby, Arkansas City, or any of the surrounding areas, and want to learn more about how braces can benefit you far beyond a straighter smile, get in touch with us today. With five locations, two experienced orthodontists, and a skilled staff, we have everything you need to to find the smile you’ve always wanted!