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Home / Blog / Braces / How To Fix Crooked Teeth

How To Fix Crooked Teeth

Medically reviewed by Dr Minoo Ghamari  / Jun 24, 2024  
Medically reviewed by Dr Minoo Ghamari  
Jun 24, 2024  
How To Fix Crooked Teeth

Crooked teeth is when your teeth overlap each other, appear wonky, and miss that uniformed look that perfect smiles tend to adorn. You might not like your crooked teeth and want to fix them purely for aesthetic purposes, but you might also want them fixed because of the adverse symptoms that can come from them.

Here at Gorgeous Smiles, we want to help make you the happiest you can be by fixing crooked teeth in a number of different ways. Keep reading for our expert advice on what we might suggest as your treatment plan, depending on the severity of your teeth positioning and personal circumstances.

What are crooked teeth and how do they occur?

Crooked teeth are simply misaligned teeth, being bent or twisted out of their natural shape. This is one of the most common types of dental issues among children and adults, so the good news is that you're not alone! In fact, nine out of ten people have crooked teeth, so it's much more common than you might think. Here are a few reasons why you might find your teeth becoming crooked:

  • Jaw size: Smaller and shorter jaws may cause crowding and crooked teeth, and you might need some teeth removed to rectify the issue

  • Genetics: You might be more likely to have crooked teeth if one or both of your parents have similar issues

  • Malocclusion: Otherwise known as jaw misalignment, malocclusion can cause an over or underbite which is where teeth protrude over each other and cause crookedness

  • Childhood habits: Habits such as thumb sucking and using a dummy for too long can cause crooked teeth, as well as habits formed in childhood such as tongue thrusting and mouth breathing

  • Poor dental hygiene: Gum disease is a common cause of crooked teeth, and when it's not treated in a timely manner it can cause a number of dental issues over time

We've also seen things like poor nutrition and facial injury cause crooked teeth, and even age can cause changes in your teeth alignment. In simple terms, almost anything can cause crooked teeth!

How to fix crooked teeth

There are quite a few ways to fix crooked teeth, but the main option available to you is braces. No, we're not automatically only talking about the traditional metal type - there are many other options available to you. Let's check these out now:

Traditional braces

Okay, we know we said this wasn't your only option (and it isn't!), but traditional braces are an excellent way to fix crooked teeth for both children and adults. They use metal brackets attached to the teeth and flexible wire fixed with rubber bands. We find these braces to be the strongest and most reliable, so they're often recommended for people who have the most complex dental issues.

The majority of orthodontists will recommend metal braces for fixing crooked teeth because they are strong and easy to work with. They can often fix crooked teeth in the quickest time and they're most affordable. Luckily, metal braces have been modified to be smaller and more comfortable than they have been in the past, making them more suitable for almost everyone.

To learn more about traditional braces, keep reading here.

Ceramic braces

Traditional braces are effective and they cost less - but we understand that not everyone wants the metal braces obscuring their smile. This is especially true when you're a professional with a job where you need to speak to people on a daily basis, and this is where ceramic braces come in. Ceramic braces work in exactly the same way as traditional braces, but rather than being made from metal, they're made from tooth-coloured ceramic.

Some patients prefer ceramic braces because they're less obvious to see when you're smiling or talking. However, we have to warn you that ceramic braces tend to break more easily and the material can stain if you eat and drink lots of dark-coloured foods and drinks. They're also more expensive than metal braces, which might be an influential factor if you're conscious of your budget.

Lingual braces

Another option if you don't want your braces to be seen as obviously as metal braces is lingual braces. These are still made from metal, but instead of being attached to the front of your teeth, we'll attach them to the back. They can straighten teeth from the inside, making them less intrusive when you smile and talk.

Unfortunately, lingual braces can't be used to fix all crooked teeth depending on the severity of your misalignment. For example, if your teeth are so crooked that the other teeth reduce the surface area of each tooth back, it's possible that we won't be able to secure the brackets to them. Lingual braces cost more than traditional braces and they're often also more difficult to clean.

Invisible braces

Invisible braces, otherwise known as Invisalign or clear aligners, can be worn by both children and adults. In our experience, they're the most popular type of braces for adults because they're almost invisible, so they shouldn't interrupt your smile or affect your self esteem. We'll mould the aligners to your mouth to create a custom-fitting brace that most patients find more comfortable than other types of braces.

Invisalign braces need to be worn 22 hours a day and you should only take them out when you're eating or cleaning them. The trays will need to be replaced every two weeks to gently pull the braces into their correct position. While this type of brace is popular and often the one we're asked most about, we usually won't recommend it for severely crooked teeth. It's best for minor cases as they might not work best for all misaligned teeth.

To learn more about Invisalign, keep reading here.

Teeth straightening surgery

Other than braces, we might recommend surgical teeth straightening to fix crooked teeth. It's sometimes the preferable option because it doesn't take time like braces do to work, and you won't need to wear braces for years before enjoying a perfect smile. We recommend this option to people who can't stand the discomfort of wearing braces. Teeth straightening surgery can reposition the bones and gums to hold your teeth in their correct place.

We usually only recommend teeth straightening surgery for patients with complex misalignment issues that have been affecting things like speech and chewing.

Porcelain veneers

Another alternative to braces is veneers, which is an option that can take away the time-consuming requirements that braces offer. Porcelain veneers are made from a thin layer of material positioned over your natural teeth to disguise any imperfections. Veneers can be used to straighten crooked teeth as well as fix misshapen teeth or stains.

Most orthodontists will need to remove some of the tooth's surface before attaching the veneers, making it a permanent cosmetic procedure. It's also expensive, so if your teeth are otherwise healthy aside from their positioning, we might suggest a less invasive alternative.

To learn more about porcelain veneers, keep reading here.

Dental crowns

While it might not be the most obvious method of straightening teeth, we sometimes recommend dental crowns if your teeth are severely broken or decayed. After treating the decay, we'll attach a dental crown on top of the damage to look as good as new! Not only does this fix your crooked and misaligned teeth with straight teeth, but it also helps you get rid of potential damage and decay.

The issue with crowns is that they're not designed to last forever and they'll need replacing eventually. However, with good oral hygiene they can last up to 15 years without being replaced!

To read more about dental crowns, take a look here.

Teeth bonding

Much like dental crowns, we won't recommend teeth bonding straight away when you want to fix crooked or misaligned teeth. However, it may be a good option for people who don't want to wear braces for years and who want a less invasive approach to veneers or surgery. Teeth bonding uses a composite resin on top of the existing teeth to make them straighter and more aligned.

Dental bonding only takes a few hours and can be a great fix for people with mildly misaligned teeth. However, they'll often need to be replaced every three to ten years depending on how you look after them.

To learn more about dental bonding, keep reading here.

Final thoughts

Crooked teeth is one of the most common issues dentists and orthodontists see, with around nine out of ten people suffering from some kind of misalignment. Braces are by far the most common method of fixing misaligned teeth, and you have the option of metal, ceramic, lingual, and invisible braces. However, if you don't want to undergo years of treatment and have other reasons for not using braces, you might be offered teeth straightening surgery. Alternatively, you could go down the veneers route, or opt for crowns or bonding. Working with your dentist will make sure you choose the best treatment plan for you.

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