Crooked Teeth Hurt More Than Just Your Appearance

Updated August 17, 2016

Do you hate smiling? Are there no pictures of you when you have a big, happy smile on your face? Why is that? Are you unhappy or do you not like to smile because your have crooked teeth and are ashamed and embarrassed? If the latter is the case, don’t be ashamed or embarrassed by your crooked teeth! Crooked teeth are common and can be caused by a couple of reasons. 

While many people believe that having crooked teeth is just a cosmetic flaw, there’s much more to it than that. Here are some ways that crooked teeth can affect your overall health and wellbeing.

Untitled design-21.jpg

Crooked teeth just add character to my smile, right?

We are all regular people, and crooked teeth could set you apart from others to make you more individualistic, interesting, and exciting than other people. If that were the case, there would be a lot more people showing a crooked smile.

If it were purely a cosmetic issue, it might be ok to just let crooked teeth stay crooked and lend some “personality” to your smile. Surprisingly though, crooked teeth not only affect your oral health, but also your body and mind in general.

Don’t believe us? Keep reading.

Hard To Clean

Misaligned and crooked teeth are much harder to keep clean. Brushes may miss areas where teeth overlap, allowing bacteria and plaque to build up around those spots. This often leads to cavities and other problems.

Since your teeth are crooked and not in perfect alignment, you could have certain teeth that stick out more than others causing the inside of your mouth to develop ulcers where teeth may be rubbing on the lining of the inside of your cheeks called the buccal mucosa. When one of these ulcers develops, they hurt, and it seems to take them forever to heal. The reason for that is the mouth contains an enormous amount of bacteria. Open sores take longer to heal because they are constantly irritated by food, drink, bacteria, and any other substance we put in our mouth.

If you have crooked teeth, make sure to take extra care when brushing and flossing, and even consider augmenting your routine to include a water-flossing tool.

If you are plagued with oral sores, make sure to get into the dentist for a check-up to make sure it is your crooked teeth that are rubbing on the inside of your cheeks and not something else. If your dentist is unable to find a cause for your oral sores, you may need to follow-up with your primary care provider to be evaluated further.

Gum Disease

It’s much more difficult for gums to maintain a proper seal around your teeth when they are crooked or overlap. The buildup of bacteria and plaque from inadequate cleaning can lead to gum disease, and gums that don’t completely fit around your teeth can actually accelerate this process.

In addition, your gums could become irritated and inflamed from the bacteria and could cause an abscess. An abscessed tooth is very painful and could require antibiotics, draining of the abscess, your tooth pulled, or all of the above.

Bad Breath

The build-up of bacteria from hard-to-clean teeth and gums often results in bad breath. Again, be sure to take special care when cleaning crooked teeth, and try to utilize mouthwashes and sugarless gum whenever possible to reduce the detriment of these side effects.

Since bad breath can be caused from many sources, if you are not getting any relief from your bad breath after using mouthwash or gum, and you are brushing twice a day, you need to visit your dentist for a check-up to find the cause of your bad breath. If your dentist determines it is not coming from your teeth or any other oral structures, you may need to follow-up with your primary care physician for further evaluation to make sure you do not have an illness like strep throat or acid reflux that is the source of your foul mouth odor.

Tooth Wear

Crooked teeth often do not fit together properly, and tend to rub against one another causing tooth wear and eventual dilapidation. Over time, this rubbing can cause the enamel (the hard, clear coating that protects your teeth) to wear down, increasing your chances of cavities and other dental problems.

Not only can serious tooth wear lead to tooth disease, but it can also become extremely painful.

Tooth Injuries

If your teeth happen to protrude from your mouth to any extent, they will be much more susceptible to being chipped or broken when involved in an accident or physical altercation. Be sure to wear a mouth-guard when playing sports to help protect your teeth in a preventative way.

Chewing Problems

Difficulty chewing might become a problem as crooked teeth can lead to misalignment of the jaw. Consequently, this can lead to muscular pain and stress in the jaw muscles. Be sure to monitor this closely, as trouble here might require long-term rehabilitation or extensive dental work.

Self-Esteem and Happiness

A wide smile reflects confidence and high self-esteem. As it is front and center on your face, a crooked smile is easily noticed and hard to hide unless you stop smiling altogether.

Surprisingly, in addition to making you look unhappy and perhaps driving others away, not smiling affects your overall health and wellness. The act of smiling has been shown to improve general health in terms of self-esteem and happiness.

Overall Health

While having crooked teeth unquestionably affects your dental health, did you know that the mouth infections caused by bacteria could also lead to heart disease, stroke, diabetes and pneumonia? For this reason, your dentist or oral surgeon might prescribe an antibiotic after performing a dental procedure.

If you have severely, or even slightly crooked teeth but thought it was just something you could ignore, you might want to rethink your course of action.

It would be a great idea to schedule an appointment with a dentist to evaluate your individual situation. Find a dentist in the area that comes recommended and get started as soon as possible.

Related Articles