An Orthodontist Discusses How Jawbone Development Can Affect Your Smile

If you are seeing an orthodontist to improve your smile, there are many areas to look at and consider. You are getting orthodontic treatment so that you can feel happier about your appearance. Part of this may involve correcting jaw abnormalities and how these are linked to the alignment of your teeth. Jaw growth can also be related to other features of your face as they pertain to your smile.

How the orthodontist treats patients and improves smiles

When a person begins orthodontic treatment, the staff will assess the patient’s condition. There will be a series of X-rays and impressions to determine how to improve the patient’s smile. The dentist may elect to put braces on the person. The metal brackets put pressure on the teeth, forcing them to move. Other options such as facemasks and elastics can move the jaw. Pushing it outward or pulling it inward can correct bite dysfunctions.

Factors that affect jawbone growth

An orthodontist will explore what is causing slow or inadequate jawbone growth. There are a few explanations. One can be genetics. Injuries can also play a role. People who used pacifiers or who sucked their thumbs as infants can also have jaw-growth problems. Mouth breathing is another cause.

The jaw and the person’s bite

When the patient has a jaw abnormality, a few factors can cause this. One of these is poor jaw growth or an improperly developed jaw. This could cause the lower jaw to protrude farther out than the upper jaw. This is known as an underbite. The opposite problem can also occur: the upper jaw can be farther out than the lower jaw. This is known as an overbite.

Crossbites are also possible. All three of these conditions can cause pain and discomfort for the person. It can also be noticeable to other people, making it embarrassing for the patient. Severe bite problems require extensive treatment.

The lips

An orthodontist may also be able to change the way a person’s lips work and affect the smile. When a jaw is underdeveloped, it becomes recessed. This provides little support and can cause the lips to look thin. Repairing this jaw condition can help make the lips appear fuller. This, in turn, positively affects the smile, making it look more attractive.

The cheekbone

A healthy, prominent cheekbone can improve a person’s smile. When this part of the face is not noticeable, the person may feel self-conscious and unhappy with their smile. One major cause of an absent cheekbone is poor jaw growth or development. The orthodontist can pull the jaw downward with braces or other treatments.

Facially focused correction

Correcting any jawbone problem can improve a person’s smile. The dentist will need to evaluate the patient’s jaw and facial development. The tongue should position itself against the roof of the mouth during development. This allows the upper jaw to broaden to the sides and forward. This results in a normal smile.

An open mouth posture results in improper midface growth. The lower jaw is trapped behind a midface and upper jaw. Poor oral posture like this causes changes in facial growth. It then causes sleep apnea, temporomandibular joint problems, dental crowding, and headaches.

The palatal expansion comes next after a thorough evaluation. The dentist will use dental appliances to stimulate the production of the new jawbone. Reshaping and remodeling the existing bone can enhance facial features. This treatment can improve a person’s smile and appearance. Palatal expansion broadens the upper jaw. It then allows the lower jaw to move forward.

This treatment creates enough space for proper teeth and bite alignment. It helps develop jaws and facial features. The expansion also corrects bite problems without surgery. A broad dental arch is important in achieving a proper smile and airway. Clear dental aligners can help straighten the teeth along the dental arch. A broader jawbone and straighter teeth result in a better smile.

Treating your jaw can change your smile

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