Your mouth (just like the rest of your body) is constantly evolving and part of that evolution is your teeth. It may seem surprising, especially when you first notice that one or more of your teeth are constantly moving! Understanding what’s been going on in your mouth (and face) over the years will help you know what to expect and what you can do about it. But before knowing the causes, we must demystify one of the biggest myths in dentistry and orthodontics!
Wisdom teeth play no role in tooth mobility!
Wisdom teeth (third molars) are the last teeth to grow in and are often impacted due to lack of space. Many people (including dental professionals) still believe today, incorrectly, that the pressure exerted by the third molars pushes the rest of the teeth forward and causes them to move. Most research has failed to show an association and, more importantly, teeth move even if wisdom teeth are removed (extracted). So if it’s not wisdom teeth, why are teeth moving?!
Here are the six most important reasons why your teeth will keep shifting:
Your lower jaw keeps growing!
This may be one of the most surprising reasons, but believe it or not, your lower jaw (mandible) continues to grow forward all the time. This forward growth, although very slow and small in magnitude, results in your lower anterior teeth colliding with the upper anterior teeth from behind, resulting in upper anterior tooth spacing or anterior crowding. lower (crooked).
The width of your lower jaw decreases over time.
The width of the lower jaw is reduced over the years, especially at the level of the lower canines. As a result, the lower front teeth are also closer together over time.
Teeth grinding and wear.
Grinding (grinding or clenching) of the teeth (bruxism) is a destructive process that causes excessive wear of the teeth and can also damage the tissues around them. This results in shorter teeth, changes in bite and, in severe cases, facial changes.
Dental procedures and tooth loss.
The teeth thus continue to grow throughout life. If one of your teeth is removed, the teeth next to it and opposite will move into the space created. For example, if the lower first molar is extracted, the upper first molar may begin to “fall out” into the space. Thus, the lower second molar can begin to move forward.
Periodontal disease and bone loss.
Periodontal disease refers to the inflammation (and infection) of the tissues surrounding the teeth, especially the bones and gums. This results in bone loss above the teeth, which means less support for your teeth. Displacement (and mobility) of the teeth is a common consequence and often causes spaces to appear between the teeth.
The teeth are coated externally by the lips and cheeks and internally by the tongue. In general, aging makes the lips tighter, which means greater pressure on the teeth from the outside. Result ? No more clutter!
Interestingly, aging lips also affect your smile. Which explains why you show fewer upper front teeth and more lower front teeth when you smile! So you ask yourself, “What can I do to keep my teeth from moving?” “. We’re glad you asked the question!
Here are some steps you can take!
Keep your mouth and teeth healthy.
Regular dental visits and recommended treatment are a good start. Maintaining your oral health minimizes the risk of periodontal disease and tooth loss.
Treat any chronic bite or grinding problems.
Teeth grinding is not a trivial problem and should be treated quickly. Although there is no cure, there are certainly ways to protect your teeth from the damaging effects of grinding. For example, mouthguards are effective in preventing tooth wear.
It’s important to understand that a problem with the position of your teeth will never resolve itself, will never get better, and will likely get worse over time. Orthodontics for adults is becoming more and more popular, especially thanks to more discreet treatment options. Keep in mind that fixing a minor problem is easier, faster, and cheaper than tackling a more complex problem. If we know for a fact that any existing condition will only get worse over time, then waiting and postponing orthodontic treatment doesn’t make much sense!