Straight Teeth Are Healthy Teeth: Why Alignment Matters

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Straight Teeth Are Healthy Teeth: Why Alignment Matters

You may think that the main reason to straighten your teeth is to make them look better. However, the main reason to straighten your teeth is to improve your oral health. A beautiful smile is the happy side effect of straight, healthy teeth.

Straight, tightly-spaced teeth aren’t just aesthetically pleasing. They’re healthier than crooked, twisted, or gapped teeth. 

Your teeth are the gears that your jaw uses to chew food so that you can digest it properly. If the gears are out of alignment, it can affect every aspect of your health, including your digestion.

At Laguna Vista Dental in Elk Grove, California, our expert team is committed to giving you the healthiest, most functional smile possible. Oh, and your straight teeth will also be beautiful! 

What’s wrong with crooked teeth

Human adults have a bite strength of up to 162 pounds per square inch. A tooth can only do its job properly when an opposing tooth meets that force in perfect alignment. Crooked teeth create significant imbalances while chewing, which means that your:

  • Teeth get damaged
  • Surrounding muscles get overworked
  • Jaw becomes overly stressed

If your teeth are just slightly misaligned, your bite may still be functional. However, severely misaligned teeth cause various issues that can impact your oral health and overall wellbeing. Symptoms can be mild or severe, including:

  • Tooth pain
  • Tooth sensitivity
  • Discomfort while chewing
  • Jaw pain
  • Teeth grinding
  • Temporomandibular joint disorder (TMJ/TMD)
  • Headaches and migraines
  • Neck pain
  • Speech issues
  • Changing face shape

If you have one or more of these symptoms, they may be caused by your crooked teeth. 

Why your teeth are misaligned

Your teeth may have erupted incorrectly, which led to crooked teeth. Your teeth may also become misaligned due to:

  • Tooth loss
  • Abnormal tooth shape
  • Improperly fitted dental implants 
  • Underbite or overbite of jaw
  • Injury
  • Mouth or jaw tumor
  • Thumb-sucking, pacifier use in childhood
  • Birth defects (e.g., cleft lip or palate)

Misaligned, crowded, and gapped teeth are harder to keep clean than straight teeth. If you have crooked teeth, you’re more likely to develop gingivitis or even periodontal disease.

You can straighten your teeth

You don’t have to live with crooked teeth or suffer their long-term consequences, such as pain, tooth chipping, and poor digestion. Our orthodontic team analyzes your bite and devises a solution to get your jaws and teeth back in gear. They may recommend:

Tooth extraction

If your teeth are too crowded, you may benefit from removing one or two teeth before your orthodontic treatment. This gives your remaining teeth room enough to shift into healthier positions.


Traditional metal wire and bracket braces can handle even very complex tooth movements to help you achieve a healthier bite. You can also choose to have clear acrylic braces or braces that are applied to the backs of your teeth for a cleaner look.

Clear aligners 

Clear aligners gradually and painlessly nudge your teeth into healthier positions. You need to wear the nearly invisible alignment trays for at least 20 hours per day. You also must change to a new, graduated tray every two weeks. Clear aligners work faster than traditional braces, as long as you wear them as directed. 

If you want to improve your oral health — and your smile — by straightening your teeth, call now to book your appointment, or request an appointment online.