We believe wellness starts with your mouth. Whether that be what you eat and drink, your breathing patterns or your oral health, your mouth is the window to many other systems in your body. So how does orthodontics benefit your health and wellness?
What is Orthodontics?
Orthodontics is the field of dentistry that focuses on preventing, diagnosing and treating facial and dental irregularities. The most common orthodontic treatments revolve around straightening crooked or crowded teeth, but orthodontics also includes correcting painful and misaligned jaws or bites (malocclusion), preventing tooth movement, assessing dental and facial growth, and even treating some forms of sleep apnoea.
Whilst some dentists have undergone further training and can perform certain orthodontic treatments, there are specialist orthodontists that complete extensive post graduate specialist orthodontic training to become solely focused on aligning smiles. Whilst there are differences, dentists and orthodontists work together to improve your oral wellness and ensure you’re getting the best results for your health and well being.
Orthodontics and Oral Wellness
Before we talk about the overall effects orthodontic treatment can have on your wellness, let’s first talk about what it can do for your oral wellness.
Many people look at teeth straightening from an aesthetic point of view, but correcting straight teeth actually plays a big role in improving oral wellness. Brushing and flossing can be a little harder with crooked teeth, therefore, it’s easier for food and bacteria to build up between them. By correcting crooked teeth, orthodontics can reduce the risks of tooth decay, gum disease, and tooth wear by making it easier for you to care for your mouth.
Orthodontics also looks at jaw and bite alignment. If jaw or bite misalignment is severe it can not only cause discomfort but can also affect your eating, breathing, sleeping and speech. Orthodontic treatment can help correct malocclusion and allow the jaw to function more naturally, alleviate pain, and reduce interference with eating, breathing, or speech.
The effective ability to correctly chew our food (called “mastication”) is part of the first phase of digesting our food. Poor bites can limit the ability to masticate our food and this can have a flow on effect to our digestion and absorption of nutrients.
Every smile is unique and as orthodontist’s we celebrate that, but sometimes a crooked smile can lower your self-esteem. That’s where orthodontic treatment comes in!
By using orthodontic treatments such as braces or Invisalign we can correct crooked or crowded teeth so you can be smiling confidently in no time. Now, we aren’t saying you’ll get an automatic self-confidence boost from a straight smile but it goes a long to helping you feel (and look) great.
The feel good factor!
A straight smile can help your mental wellness. Yep that’s right - your mental well being can be positively affected by orthodontic treatment!
Achieving the smile you’ve always dreamed of means you’re going to want to show it off. So, after you’ve straightened your smile you’ll hopefully be smiling more and more.
When we smile we activate neural messaging that creates this ripple effect of benefits to our health and well-being. Smiling activates the release of tiny molecules called neuropeptides from our brain. These allow our neurons to communicate and essentially send messages to our whole body to tell it how we are feeling. Dopamine, Endorphins and Serotonin are all known as “feel-good” neurotransmitters. Every time you smile these three are released and all play a role in relaxing our body, reducing stress, and even helping to lower our blood pressure.
Orthodontics is more than just aesthetics. The benefits of undergoing orthodontic treatment includes functional improvements, oral wellness, boosting self-esteem and improving your mental well being. The ripple effects of creating a confident, healthy smile using orthodontics can also flow throughout our body helping to improve our overall wellness.
We want you smiling confidently every day of the week. Book a consultation and find out how orthodontics could help your smile.