Are you an adult who is self-conscious about your smile due to crooked teeth, protruding teeth, or teeth with large gaps in between them? If so, then perhaps you've considered getting braces but are unsure about it because you think braces are for teenagers and aren't sure how you will look with them. Before you disregard the possibility of braces altogether, however, you should be aware of all the health benefits that you can enjoy when you have straighter teeth.

Decreased Chance of Gum Disease

When you have crooked teeth, managing your dental hygiene becomes a greater challenge. That's because crooked or even crowded teeth can be difficult to floss, which can lead to plaque and tartar buildup--especially around the gums. The end result, then, is an increased risk of developing gum diseases, such as gingivitis and periodontal disease. Unfortunately, periodontal disease often leads to the loss of permanent teeth. When you have straight teeth as a result of braces, however, you can better take care of your teeth and thus improve the health of your gums, reducing your risk of gum disease in the process.

Reduction of Jaw (TMJ) Problems

Do you often experience pain or discomfort in your jaw? If so, then you might be suffering from a temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder, which is common in those who have crooked teeth and/or jaw. When the TMJ joints on either side of your mouth aren't perfectly lined up, you can experience pain and even lock-jaw. Many orthodontists, however, can address TMJ problems through treatment with braces. Specifically, your orthodontist or dentist may employ the strategic use of rubber bands to better align your jaw while straightening your teeth as well.

Less Risk of Dental Injuries/Trauma

Finally, understand that when you have crooked or protruding teeth, you are also at a greater risk of dental injuries and trauma due to the increased exposure of your teeth. This is especially true if you are an athlete and already prone to mouth injuries. By getting braces, your teeth will be in a safer position to avoid serious trauma, which could save you thousands of dollars in dental bills down the road. So while braces may be a temporary inconvenience for you, it's important to think about the long-term benefits that you'll enjoy as a result. From there, you can make a better informed decision over whether or not braces are right for you.

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