Many people want a perfect smile, which to them includes a healthy mouth and straight teeth. Unfortunately, while many of us can achieve great oral health through consistent home care and regular dental check ups, perfectly straight teeth don’t always come naturally.
There are several options to fix crooked teeth, including cosmetic dentistry or braces. Plus, with improving dental and orthodontic technology many of these options are easier and less invasive than ever. And in some cases, cosmetic dentistry can help you achieve a perfect smile without braces or aligners. So these days it’s less about if you can fix crooked teeth and more about how to fix crooked teeth.
Cosmetic Dentistry vs Braces: How to Fix Crooked Teeth
So what are your options when it comes to fixing crooked teeth? Can a cosmetic dentist fix crooked teeth or are braces needed? And what’s the right treatment option for you? Here are our answers.
Using Braces to Fix Crooked Teeth
The main way most people know to fix crooked teeth is through the use of braces. Braces are often associated with teenage years and in some ways are almost a teenage rite of passage. One of the reasons orthodontists like putting braces on teens is that it’s really the perfect time to straighten teeth.
Teens typically have both their six and twelve year permanent molars in, as well as the remainder of their adult side teeth. Because they’re still growing, however, it’s much easier to gently move the teeth with braces (especially when there are bite or jaw issues) at this younger age. Plus, so many other kids have braces, most teens don’t feel out of place wearing metal brackets for a year or two.
Adults can also get braces and orthodontic treatment to fix crooked teeth. In some milder crowding cases, adults might have the option to wear clear aligners for six months to two years, depending on the severity of the case and the patients adherence to the treatment plan.
Besides fixing crooked teeth, one of the biggest things that braces and orthodontics is concerned about is function and how the top and bottom teeth and jaws work together. An orthodontist will take great care to make sure that not only do your teeth appear straight but also that your also teeth align properly. Properly aligned teeth with a perfect bite will help patients have less jaw pain, less wear and tear on the surface of the teeth and make sure you’re able to chew, talk and eat properly throughout your life.
In other words, if you have bite-function issues beyond simple cosmetics, braces (and sometimes aligners) are the way to go. Many orthodontists offer free consultations, or will apply your consultation fee to the cost of your treatment. And many insurance companies will cover some or all of your orthodontic treatment, as well.
Cosmetic Dentistry to Fix Crooked Teeth
Cosmetic dentistry is the right solution to fix crooked teeth if you only have minor concerns about crooked teeth or other appearance issues. Cosmetic dentistry can fix gaps in between your front teeth, give the appearance of straighter teeth, or even make dental veneers, dental implants or bridges to give you the perfect smile. Chipped teeth can be smoothed and evened, and stains erased with cosmetic dentistry. And for many patients, concerns over minimally crooked teeth disappear once other cosmetic issues are addressed.
All in all, it’s best to ask your dentist for their opinion on which option is right to fix your crooked teeth – cosmetic dentistry or braces. If you’re having regular jaw pain or you feel like your teeth don’t “fit” correctly together or you can only chew comfortably on one side of your mouth, it’s likely you’ll need orthodontic help. But if you have some small gaps or dislike how one of your teeth looks longer than the other, cosmetic dentistry is a perfect solution.
It’s up to you and your dentist how you want to tackle your treatment plan. The good news is that your options are better than ever to get both a healthy mouth and perfect teeth.
Remember: The above information is to be used as general guidelines and should not be substituted for medical advice. Contact our skilled dentists for a dental exam or professional medical advice.
Cosmetic Dentistry in Columbus Ohio
We are proud to offer professional cosmetic dentistry to our patients in central Ohio. Contact us today to learn more about cosmetic dentistry for your smile!