While orthodontic treatments are primarily used to treat bite problems, straighten teeth, and improve the structure of your mouth, that is just the tip of the iceberg. In fact, there are many benefits to your overall health that stem from proper orthodontic care that many people aren’t aware of! Because your mouth and teeth are so interconnected with other parts of your body, orthodontic treatment can have numerous other positive effects on your health. Here are some of the lesser-known benefits of orthodontics:
1. Stronger jaw
While orthodontics definitely make your teeth stronger, as you may have guessed, did you know that they also improve your jaw strength? As you age, you may experience natural jawbone loss, but this can be worsened by misaligned teeth. Teeth with too much of a gap between them can wear down the jawbone, whereas aligned teeth and a bite with evenly distributed pressure can help maintain the structure of the jawbone.
Not only will this improve the strength of your jaw in the long term, but it may aid present jaw problems such as TMJ and bruxism (grinding/clenching the teeth). Overall, preserving your jawbone through orthodontic care is important for preventing and aiding current issues, as well protecting you down the line.
2. Better breath
Did you know that misaligned teeth can contribute to bad breath? Bad breath is caused by the growth of bacteria from food particles and plaque in the mouth. Misaligned teeth may be interfering with your dental hygiene, as crowded or crooked teeth are often more difficult to clean. Therefore, when you receive orthodontic treatment to align your teeth, it is easier to keep the bacteria growth at bay and your breath will likely improve.
Of course, bad breath isn’t the main scare of bacterial buildup in the mouth–it’s just an unpleasant symptom, but it can lead to issues far more concerning such as cavities, enamel decay, and gum disease. Therefore, it’s safe to say that better breath is merely a perk of having straighter, cleaner teeth.
3. Improved digestion
Because the mouth is where digestion begins, orthodontic treatment can actually have a direct impact on your digestive health. Misaligned teeth can lead to bite problems, which often make chewing food uncomfortable or even painful. If this is the case, you may end up swallowing pieces of food that are too large, which can hurt your throat, stomach, and digestion. Chewing improperly could also lead to swallowing problems and chronic stomachaches, both of which are contributing factors to indigestion.
Additionally, having aligned teeth can aid your sleep, which is a very important element of digestion. If your sleep becomes interrupted by breathing problems (which are often caused by misaligned teeth), your digestion may be disrupted even more since this is a key time when digestion slows down to allow the body to rest.
Orthodontic care is–literally–beneficial to how you feel inside and out! For more information or to book your next appointment, call Hutta & Hutta Orthodontics at 614-423-8177.