Although you may think your teeth are fixed in place, they actually move and adjust position throughout your life. This is usually normal and not a problem. However, in some cases, this movement can be more pronounced, resulting in crooked teeth (misbite) and sometimes pain.
There are many reasons for teeth to change position, such as braces, extractions, grinding, jaw development, gum disease, etc. Even wearing a continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) treatment device for sleep problems can cause tooth displacement. This article discusses the causes of tooth displacement and what you can do to treat it.
Braces are brackets that fit over your teeth to straighten them by pressing them more and more into place. Other orthodontic treatments, such as wearing Invisalign (clear braces) or other types of removable retainers and appliances, may also be used or may be invoked to maintain an adjusted smile.
While braces and other orthodontic treatments can be effective in repairing an uneven smile, there is a chance that the teeth will start to move back into their original position. For example, if you lose your retainer or stop wearing it after removing your braces, your teeth may gradually return to their original state.
In addition, significant movement may occur due to issues with fixed retainers (i.e. retainers that are permanently bonded to the teeth). Like the other types, these are usually installed behind braces to keep teeth aligned. Problems with these retainers, such as broken wires and adhesive problems, can lead to tooth displacement.
Make sure you keep making follow-up appointments during and after your orthodontic treatment. In this way, you will be able to spot shifting teeth or other problems. Monthly exams may be required while you are receiving treatment. You should also let your orthodontist know if you experience any problems or notice damage to your appliance.
extract a tooth
Another common cause of tooth displacement is tooth extraction (also called tooth extraction). This can be corrected by doing:
- crowded teeth
- Tooth abscess (root infection)
- advanced gum disease
- Tooth impaction (a tooth cannot enter fully because it rests on another tooth or tissue)
- Damage due to trauma or falls
After a tooth extraction — or if you’ve lost one and created an open space — the remaining teeth will naturally reposition them, gradually filling the gap.
Also known as bruxism, grinding your teeth can also cause a range of dental problems. In these cases, people grind their teeth excessively and/or clench or tighten their jaw, which can damage the teeth. Some people do it mostly at night, which tends to cause more problems, while others get tense or grind their teeth from stress or tension throughout the day.
In addition to causing headaches, jaw pain, and clicks and cracks in the jaw, bruxism can also affect the position and integrity of teeth. The constant pressure this behavior puts on the teeth can cause the teeth to shift, which can lead to crooked teeth and other problems.
Throughout infancy, childhood, adolescence and young adulthood, the maxilla and mandible — the maxilla and mandible, respectively — grow and change shape. Usually, in the teenage years, the mandible grows more than the maxilla, which can lead to crowding of the teeth in the lower row of teeth. Additionally, this can lead to malocclusion (misaligned teeth).
In most cases, the resulting tooth movement is not a problem. However, occlusal changes may occur, which require treatment.
Gum disease, such as gingivitis (inflamed, bleeding gums) and periodontitis (infection of the gums), can also lead to tooth displacement through secondary bone loss. Periodontitis (a complication of gingivitis) begins to affect the underlying bones, which can cause teeth to loosen or fall out. As a result, some people with this condition experience significant tooth activity.
Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) therapy is the use of a special device to treat sleep apnea, a condition that causes interruptions in breathing and snoring. A CPAP device worn overnight delivers filtered, pressurized air through a tube attached to a full-face mask, nasal mask, or nasal pillow (earplug-like inserts for the nostrils).
In rare cases, the use of a CPAP device can cause the teeth to move out of alignment, resulting in uneven displacement. It is believed that air pressure pushes the tongue forward, causing the front teeth to move and open. In addition, retraction or inward tilting of the upper teeth was also reported due to the use of a full face mask.
One of the main ways to keep teeth from shifting is to wear removable retainers. These appliances are often required to apply pressure to keep your teeth from shifting after your braces are removed to maintain a change in your smile. They’re made of custom acrylic with wires to put pressure on your teeth.
Typically, your orthodontist will give you specific instructions on how to care for and wear this appliance. Typically, this will involve:
- Wear the retainer for at least 12 hours a day for the first six months.
- Keep wearing it the night after that.
- If it feels tight, you need to wear more.
- Remove the retainer when eating.
Special retainers such as spring braces can help treat very slight tooth movements.
In some cases, your orthodontist may recommend that you install a permanent or lingual retainer to correct misalignment caused by shifting teeth. These braided or bare wires are custom made and glued to the inside of your teeth and function much like removable retainers. While very effective, you need to make sure you clean them properly to avoid plaque buildup.
Another way to manage tooth displacement is to use a mouthguard to treat grinding or clenching. When worn at night, they provide cushioning between the upper and lower teeth. This, in turn, relieves pressure on the jawbone and teeth, causing the teeth to shift.
proper oral hygiene
The key to changing teeth is keeping them healthy. Good oral hygiene means:
- Brush your teeth properly twice a day
- floss at least once a day
- avoid smoking
- balanced diet
- drinking fluoridated water
- Keep up with dental appointments for cleanings and exams
How to find a new dentist near you
Teeth can shift for a variety of reasons, including those that people can control (braces, extractions, retainers, use of CPAP) and those that people cannot control (jaw growth, teeth grinding). There are various treatments available to fix misaligned teeth, including the use of removable or permanent retainers and the wearing of mouthguards. If you feel your teeth are shifting, see your dentist as soon as possible.
Whether it’s caused after orthodontic adjustments, tooth extractions, or other issues, there’s no doubt that your misaligned teeth can be a burden. Misaligned teeth can cause physical discomfort and affect self-confidence and sense of self-worth. The good news is that this problem can be solved. initiative. If you notice a problem with your smile, see your dentist early to correct the problem.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I stop my teeth from shifting?
Yes, with help. Managing tooth displacement often requires the use of orthodontic or dental appliances. You may have to wear a removable retainer or install a permanent retainer. Also, if the problem is caused by grinding your teeth, wearing a mouthguard while you sleep can help.
Is tooth displacement normal?
Yes. Everyone’s teeth undergo some changes as they grow and their jaws develop, so some changes in alignment are normal and expected. This is why teens and teens often have crooked teeth. In addition, tooth displacement can occur after the braces are removed or the teeth are grinded.