You may not realize it, but an attractive smile is a powerful thing. Multiple studies have shown it’s the first thing people notice about you, and what they’re most likely to remember as well. A healthy smile can make you appear more successful and approachable, and some people may even feel you’re more trustworthy when you’re showing off your pearly whites! Here at Ollins Orthodontics, we are proud to provide beautifully aligned, fully functional smiles for patients of all ages in Nutley and the surrounding communities. And while there’s no doubt that aesthetics are important, it’s important to understand that orthodontic treatment like braces has a number of benefits that go beyond the cosmetic. Teeth and jaws that are aligned can improve not only your appearance, but give your overall oral health a boost, too! Keep reading below to learn more about the benefits braces have to offer you besides a straighter smile.

Understanding how braces work

In order to fully appreciate the many benefits of braces treatment, it helps to have some understanding of how they actually work. Traditional braces are generally composed of metal or ceramic brackets that attach to your teeth. Wires and tiny rubber bands are used to tie these together, exerting gentle pressure in specific directions. It is this controlled pressure that will eventually move the teeth into their more desirable positions.

Braces are also capable of helping to reshape the jawline by dissolving bone that is then replaced with new bone growth that will support the teeth in their new positions. This method of treatment is cost-efficient, and has proven over many years to be incredibly effective at correcting a number of dental issues, including:

  • difficulties with chewing or biting
  • misaligned teeth or jaws
  • excessive wear and tear of the teeth
  • teeth that have excessive spacing
  • overlapping or crowded teeth

When you schedule a complimentary examination with one of our doctors, they will begin by listening to any orthodontic concerns you currently have, followed by a thorough look at your teeth and jaws. This assessment will determine if orthodontic treatment is needed for any reason, and if braces could be the right fit for you and your smile.

The many benefits of orthodontic treatment with braces

Misaligned teeth and jaws can have a knock-on effect. You may find your appearance and overall health are affected, and it can even cause you to have increased difficulty with everyday tasks like eating and speaking. Your oral hygiene routine can also suffer, becoming more difficult to maintain, or becoming less effective over time. Orthodontic treatment is able to address and correct many of these issues. Although the most commonly known benefit of braces is straighter teeth and a more attractive smile, they also have a number of lesser-known benefits, including:

Improved chewing

When your teeth and jaws are out of alignment, you might have a hard time biting and chewing your food properly. If this is left untreated over time, it can contribute to excess wear and tear on your teeth, and may lead to the muscles of the jaws weakening. In turn, this can cause painful chewing, exacerbating any issues you’re already having.

Ollins staff working with equiptment

Improved digestion

Your digestive system might not be the first thing you think of when it comes to your smile, but your teeth are actually a crucial component of the digestive process. Chewing your food is the first, and most important, step of this process. Being unable to chew properly due to misaligned teeth can have a detrimental effect on your entire digestive system. When your teeth have trouble breaking your food down, it will pass through the digestive system much more slowly. Chewing may also be painful due to tooth or jaw pain, limiting what and how often you can eat.

Improved speech

You may be surprised to learn that your speech can also be affected by the alignment of your teeth and jaws. Misaligned teeth can influence the placement of the tip of the tongue, which is essential to properly form certain sounds, including ‘t’, ‘n’, and ‘d.’ Braces are often able to correct these kinds of speech issue by aligning the teeth, allowing for the proper placement of the tongue. Our doctors are experienced orthodontists, and are able to help identify speech issues related to misalignment. They will also be able to assess the severity of any issues, and then devise the most effective solution for you based on your specific needs.

Better oral health

It’s no secret that brushing and flossing should be a regular part of everyone’s daily hygiene routine. But crooked, crowded, and overlapping teeth can make it difficult to keep them clean, creating favorable conditions for a buildup of plaque and bacteria. This can increase your risk for issues like:

  • tooth decay
  • gum disease
  • cavities
  • gingivitis

These may be common dental ailments, but they’re also preventable. Orthodontic treatment can help move the teeth into more optimal positions, making it much easier to maintain an effective dental hygiene routine and reducing your potential for developing unhealthy teeth and gums.

Improved jaw alignment

When your teeth are misaligned, it can have a noticeable effect on your jaw muscles and joints. If the jaws are forced to compensate for bad positioning, the joints will adapt in response, but it will often be to a position that can cause further damage. This is why we will tend to see jaw issues and misaligned teeth present in a patient together. Some of the symptoms you may experience with improper jaw alignment are:

  • headaches or migraines
  • jaw that seems to pop or “creak”
  • pain in the jaw, neck, or shoulders
  • sleep disorders

With individualized braces treatment from Ollins Orthodontics, issues such as these can be minimized or even eliminated by properly aligning your teeth and jaws. Our customized approach gives you a smile that looks great and feels good!

Ollins Orthodontics Office

Find your best smile with Ollins Orthodontics

Here at Ollins Orthodontics, we’re about a whole lot more than just straight teeth! We love creating beautiful, healthy smiles for our patients that look amazing and help you feel even better. Our skilled staff is committed to providing clear communication and compassionate care, giving you a rewarding orthodontic experience from your first appointment to your last. If you’re looking for more information about how orthodontics can benefit you, your smile, and your total body health, get in touch with us today to schedule a complimentary exam. There’s never been a better time to take the first step towards a healthier smile!