PALOS HILLS ORTHODONTIST
10059 S. ROBERTS RD. SUITE 2A
PALOS HILLS, IL 60465

Palos Hills Orthodontist | How Your Smile Changes with age

Our mouths and smiles change as we age. Your teeth and smile are affected by both the natural aging of your body as well as wear and tear from decades of use. It is vital to understand how your smile changes as you age and what can be done to keep your mouth healthy.

Change #1: Natural Wear and Tear

Your teeth are one of the most durable structures in your body. The enamel that covers your teeth is 96% mineral, making it stronger even than bone. However, they aren’t indestructible. Decades of daily use wears down enamel. Without that protection, the underlying dentin layer becomes vulnerable to cracking and breaking.

Another factor that wears down is the sensitivity of our nerves. This can be especially problematic, as when the nerves become less sensitive, people feel less pain. This can potentially cause problems to go undetected for a large amount of time.

The best way to combat wear and tear is to keep up with your brushing and flossing habits no matter your age. Your dental team can recommend a soft bristled, professional electric toothbrush that can help thoroughly clean your mouth. Keep regular dental appointments and follow the recommendations made by your dental team. This will help keep enamel strong and strengthen your teeth to slow down damage caused by wear and tear.

Change #2: Teeth Shifting

Bones gradually lose strength as we age, and jaws are no exception. As the jawbone weakens, teeth can shift in a variety of ways. For some, they shift laterally, either bunching up or growing further apart. Other times they bend inward towards the tongue or outward towards the gums. Not only can this shift be due to weakening bone; other times it’s a sign of periodontal disease, which causes gums to recede.

In some cases, an orthodontic solution may be appropriate. Braces or Invisalign are effective ways to fix your teeth and get them back into proper alignment. If the shift has been caused by periodontal disease, a treatment plan involving periodontal care may be recommended.

Change #3: Oral Cancer

Oral cancers can appear in patients of any age, gender or race. It is, however, more common among older patients. A thorough dental examination will include an oral cancer screening. Never hesitate to ask your dentist for information on this life saving step.

Some oral cancers have no obvious symptoms, whereas some may present as open sores, white patches in the mouth, or changes in the color of the gums and lining of the mouth. Ideally, the cancer is caught in the earliest stages and can be effectively treated.

How can we help?

There are a number of ways that your smile can change as you age. We offer preventive, restorative and cosmetic dentistry. Contact us to schedule an appointment with our Palos Hills orthodontic team.

Paul DiFranco Orthodontics of Palos Hills
Phone: (708) 930-5941
Url: http://www.paloshillsortho.com/
10059 S. Roberts Rd. Suite 2A
Palos Hills, IL 60465

Orthodontist 60465 | Solutions for Malocclusion

Your mouth’s ability to function is a vital part of your oral health. In orthodontics, a patient’s “bite” refers to the way upper and lower teeth come together when the mouth is at rest. When teeth meet improperly, or don’t meet at all, it is known as a malocclusion. If malocclusions are left untreated, it can cause lasting damage to the mouth’s ability to function.

What Types of Malocclusion Exist?

There are many different types of malocclusion, including:

  • Open Bite – Occurs when the front teeth meet but the back teeth do not. This problem generally occurs from excessive thumb sucking or mouth breathing during infancy and adolescence. If not properly treated, it can lead to issues swallowing and speaking.
  • Underbite – Underbite occurs when the lower jaw remains in front of the upper jaw while the mouth is closed. This problem can lead to excessive tooth wear and stress on the jaw.
  • Crossbite – Crossbite occurs when the upper teeth rest inside of the lower teeth. This leads to excessive wear on tooth enamel and uneven jaw growth.
  • Deep Bite – Deep bites are when the upper teeth cover the lower teeth when the jaw is closed. Like crossbites, deep bites can cause excessive enamel wear and damage to teeth.
  • Crowding – Crowding refers to the jaw having inadequate room for teeth to properly grow in. This leads to an increased risk of gum disease as the teeth are much more difficult to clean.
  • Spacing – Spacing is the opposite of crowding, occurring when there is too much of a gap between teeth. Spacing can also lead to gum disease if not properly addressed.
  • Protrusion – Protrusion refers to the front teeth moving out farther than others.

How Are Bite Problems Treated?

There are various kinds of treatment utilized for malocclusion, depending on the type and severity. These can include:

  • Braces – Made of either metal or clear plastic and linked with wires, these gradually shift teeth into the correct position.
  • Tooth removal – Sometimes a malocclusion results from a crowded jaw, and removal of a tooth will be recommended.
  • Reshaping teeth – Using veneers and bonding, orthodontists may alter the shape of teeth to fit together better.
  • Jaw surgery – This may be recommended if necessary.

If you have any questions about malocclusion or would like to schedule an appointment, contact us today at Paul DiFranco Orthodontics of Palos Hills.

Paul DiFranco Orthodontics of Palos Hills
Phone: (708) 930-5941
Url: http://www.paloshillsortho.com/
10059 S. Roberts Rd. Suite 2A
Palos Hills, IL 60465