Archive for February, 2012

Orthodontic Treatment for Your Overall Health

orthodontist Wilton CTOrthodontic treatment is usually thought of as cosmetic—a way to turn crooked or incorrectly spaced teeth into a perfect, straight smile. However, orthodontic treatment affects more than just the appearance of the teeth. As our orthodontist can explain in an initial consultation, orthodontic treatment can help reduce wear and tear on your teeth and prevent long term problems such as clenching, grinding and TMJ disorder.

How Orthodontics Can Help Your Health

The health of your teeth and mouth is important to your overall health. If your teeth are poorly spaced or crooked, you cannot chew thoroughly, which reduces the efficiency of your digestive system overall. Or you might choose not to eat foods that are difficult to chew, which could reduce your intake of fiber and other important nutrients.

Misalignment can also lead to premature and abnormal wear and tear to your teeth. If your teeth wear down too quickly, you could face tooth loss at an early age. Loss of teeth and extensive wear and tear can cause even more misalignment, causing problems to build up over time such as TMJ disorder that could require surgery to repair. Correcting your misalignment greatly reduces the possibility of these problems becoming more severe over time.

Orthodontic Treatment

The most well known orthodontic treatment is traditional braces. This treatment uses stationary metal braces affixed to the teeth and attached to each other with flexible bands. These bands gradually pull the teeth into the proper position over time. Traditional braces are commonly used among adolescents to correct issues as permanent teeth come in.

Other orthodontic treatments include porcelain braces, Invisalign, palate expanders and other treatments designed to correct alignment and be sure the teeth are properly positioned. Your orthodontist will discuss your particular needs and the best way to bring your teeth into their optimal alignment in the long term.

To find out how orthodontic treatment can help you both improve your smile and improve your overall health, please contact our office serving Wilton CT at 203-544-9338 for a consultation.

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Will Orthodontics Change my Lifestyle?

If your teeth are crooked, or if your bite is not properly aligned, you could experience long term problems with your teeth and jaw. Orthodontics can correct these problems, preventing abnormal wear and tear and other side effects of misalignment. In addition, if you are self conscious about your smile because of crooked teeth or gaps between your teeth, orthodontic treatment can greatly improve your quality of life.

Orthodontics and Short Term Lifestyle Changes

Orthodontic treatment typically involves braces. While you are wearing braces, you must make some lifestyle changes to ensure your teeth remain healthy and your braces are able to work effectively. These changes are relatively minor, and mostly involve foods you must avoid and an increased diligence in cleaning and caring for your teeth. [pullquote]In the long term, orthodontic treatment will greatly improve your lifestyle.[/pullquote]

While you are wearing braces, you should avoid some foods, including:

  • Sticky foods
  • Hard or chewy foods
  • Sugary foods

While these foods should normally be avoided because they can promote tooth decay, it is even more important to avoid them while you are wearing braces because these types of foods can break the delicate wires that make up your braces. In addition, some healthy foods should be avoided because they can break your braces or can become wedged in them, under them, or between the teeth, making cleaning more difficult.

Your teeth and braces must also be kept clean during your orthodontic treatment. Areas between your teeth are more difficult to reach, and so are more susceptible to decay than normal. Your orthodontist will provide guidelines for how to keep your teeth and braces clean and healthy throughout your treatment.

Orthodontics and Long Term Lifestyle Changes

In the long term, orthodontic treatment will greatly improve your lifestyle. You won’t have to worry about the imperfections in your smile, and will have much more confidence in your appearance. After your braces are removed, you will be able to return to your normal dietary habits without having to worry about the long term wear and tear your teeth would have experienced without treatment.

To find out more about how orthodontics can help you in the Ridgefield CT area, please contact the office of Dr. Steve Giannoutsos today.


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