Why Are My Teeth Getting More Crooked As I Get Older?

As you get older, things are constantly changing, from friends, finances, and even our own bodies. You may have noticed your teeth shifting and becoming more crooked or crowded. Well, just like the rest of your body, your mouth and smile is constantly changing. The oral health of older adults can be impacted by several different things, including genetics, oral health habits, lifestyle habits, dental disease, overall health, and nutrition. Keep reading to learn of a few important things to know about the change in your teeth as you get older.

How Your Teeth Can Change As You Age

Although it is a common misconception that our teeth only become crooked during childhood and adolescence, that is not the case. According to the American Association of Orthodontics, it is perfectly natural for teeth to shift throughout life. Here are some of the things that could affect your teeth alignment as you get older.

New Crowding of Teeth 

It is very common for teeth to become more crowded with age, especially for patients who have not yet had their wisdom teeth removed. As you age, the density of your jaw bone also reduces and begins to shrink in size. Because this results in a difference in size of the jawbone and the teeth, this can lead to overlapping or crowding of teeth.

Everyday Tooth Wear and Grinding

Our teeth are things that we use on a daily basis while eating and speaking. Some individuals also struggle with grinding their teeth in their sleep at night. Grinding your teeth can be quite destructive, as it causes excessive tooth wear and can even result in damage to the tissues surrounding your teeth. This can result in shorter teeth, bite changes, and facial changes.

Failure to Wear Retainers

Another common reason for a patient’s teeth to shift is from failure to wear their retainer. When you do not wear your retainer properly as instructed by your orthodontist, your teeth will gradually shift back to their original position, leaving you to deal with spacing and crowding issues again. It is important to use your retainers for life to help keep your smile straight as you get older.

Can I Stop My Teeth From Shifting?

It is important to remember that an issue with your teeth alignment will not resolve itself or get better; in fact, it will most likely get worse over time if not corrected. And although it is natural for our teeth to shift as we age, there are some steps that you can take to help!

  1. Ensure that you keep your teeth and mouth healthy. Going to your regular dental visits and getting any recommended treatments is a great start to minimize the chances of periodontal disease and tooth loss.
  2. Address any grinding or bite problems that you are experiencing. For those who experience chronic grinding, a night guard is an excellent option to help prevent any further tooth wear.
  3. Seek orthodontic treatment for any dental crowding or spacing issues that you may be experiencing. Correcting a minor issue now will be much easier, faster, and cheaper than addressing a more complex issue down the road. Call our office or book your consultation online today!

Straighten Your Smile at Any Age

Are your teeth shifting? Although you may be dealing with unwanted changes to your smile as you age, it’s never too late for orthodontic treatment. Take the time to discuss with your dentist if straightening your teeth would benefit your smile and your wellness. Call our office at Hodge Orthodontics today to schedule a consultation with our team of experienced dental professionals. We look forward to hearing from you.

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