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Why Do I Have Crooked Teeth?

Have you noticed crookedness in your teeth? Do your teeth overlap one another or have gaps between them? These misalignments might make you feel self-conscious about the way your smile appears, but they could also put you at a greater risk of many oral health concerns.

A dentist can help you straighten your teeth with Invisalign, but before you pursue cosmetic dentistry, it can help to understand what makes teeth misalign in the first place. Read on to find four reasons that your teeth might become crooked over time.

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Causes of Dental Misalignment


Your genetics can majorly influence the way that your teeth grow into place. The size and shape of your jaw, your bite and malocclusions, and crowding in your teeth can be passed down from your family members. As a result, your teeth might appear crooked without any fault in your own actions.

The palate and airway can affect your dental development. So if an obstructed airway or narrow palate cause you to breathe through your mouth during childhood, your adult teeth might form crookedly. A dentist can monitor your teeth growth and spot early signs of misaligned teeth when you visit them on a regular basis.

Childhood Behaviors

Early childhood proves an influential time for dental health. Losing baby teeth and growing permanent teeth can therefore be affected by certain oral habits a child engages in. Teeth will not have fully fused into place, so they could shift their positions when exposed to chronic behaviors.

Biting fingernails, tongue thrusting, sucking a thumb, and chewing lips could all put pressure on teeth and move them out of alignment. Ceasing these behaviors can prevent crookedness in the teeth.

Poor Oral Health Care

A good oral hygiene regimen keeps teeth clean and healthy. But this attention to your smile will help to prevent teeth from moving due to underlying dental problems too. Poor oral hygiene increases your risk for gum disease, an infection in the gum tissue.

The disease will cause gums to swell as well as recede, which can loosen the teeth or cause them to shift. You could also be in danger of tooth loss if the infection progresses.

You will need intervention from a dentist to treat this problem. So avoid contracting it in the first place by continuing good oral hygiene habits. This includes brushing your teeth twice a day, flossing every day, and attending routine teeth cleanings at your dentist’s office.

Trauma to the Teeth

Accidents can happen even with diligent preventative oral health care. A blow to the face, for instance, could create impact trauma on the teeth that could make them move and grow crooked. If you suffer a dental injury like this, call your dentist for an emergency dental evaluation.

Gradual trauma to the teeth through habits like teeth grinding could also generate pressure that may lead to dental misalignment. If you clench or grind your teeth, do not ignore this habit. Consult your dentist to reduce the damage from this chronic behavior and preserve your smile.