Can I Get Braces on Just My Bottom Teeth?
The most stereotypical of braces is brackets and wires on all of your teeth. This is not, however, the only way that you can get braces. It is possible for you to get braces just on your bottom teeth. If your upper teeth are relatively straight and do not need to be straightened to improve your oral health at all, ask Dr. Gemmi or Dr. Middleberg about getting braces just on your bottom teeth. While you might not see your bottom teeth as much when you smile, crooked bottom teeth might be just as noticeable when you talk and they might also pose a risk to your health. In some situations, however, you might think you only need braces on your bottom teeth, but discover that you actually need braces on both rows.
While you might only think that your bottom teeth need to be straightened, it is important to remember that braces do more than just adjust the appearance of your teeth. One of the biggest benefits of braces is correcting a person’s bite. Your bite is how your two rows of teeth interact with one another. While many people might not notice a problem with their bite, having a misalignment can cause a person to grind their teeth, might contribute to TMJ, and can even make it difficult to properly chew food.
Having a misaligned bite is one of the biggest reasons that an orthodontist will recommend a person gets braces on both their upper and lower teeth, even if one of those rows of teeth actually appears to be fairly straight. Braces are not just about aesthetics. While someone can have a fine bite and have a few crooked teeth that braces can quickly fix, crowded and twisted teeth do usually affect the bite. You could have a problem with your bite and not even realize it.
The main purpose of braces is not just to straighten teeth, but also to make sure they all fit and work together. This is why many people who just want braces on one row of teeth will sometimes butt heads with their orthodontist. Your orthodontist wants to provide you with the healthiest possible mouth, not just with straighter teeth. Under the right circumstances, it is possible to just get braces on your bottom teeth, but only after consulting your orthodontist and talking about what solution is actually going to be right for you and your health.
If you have an overbite, for example, straightening just your bottom teeth, which will usually cause them to move forward, may help to correct that issue, and you might not need to have any corrective treatment on your upper teeth. On the other hand, if you have an underbite when you begin treatment, straightening just your bottom teeth could actually worsen the problem. As your teeth move, it may create or worsen bite problems and your teeth will no longer function as they should. Your teeth might look straight, but they do not work well and this can cause serious problems down the line.
Having a slightly misaligned bite might not seriously affect you, but if your teeth do not match up in a significant way, you might be experiencing a number of different problems. Having top and bottom rows of teeth that do not align is one of the most common causes of teeth grinding. When you try to set your teeth together, your teeth do not match up, so as you clench your jaw, they slide against one another. You try to set them together again and they slip and grind again. Grinding your teeth will actually weaken those teeth, leading you to chipped and broken teeth down the line.
Not being able to properly chew your food is another problem that comes along with a misaligned bite. If your teeth do not properly line up, you might find that getting your food chewed is difficult. While this problem might not seem serious, chewing your food is the first stage of your digestion, and if it is not done correctly, it could cause more serious issues down the line.
Issues with your teeth will continue to worsen as you age if you do not have the problem addressed. Many people start to notice their bottom teeth crowding together as they get older and hope that they can get braces on just their bottom teeth, in order to quickly solve the problem, without having to get a full mouth of metal. There are many circumstances in which this is a possibility, but only after you have discussed this issue with Dr. Gemmi or Dr. Middleberg. It is important to keep in mind that your orthodontist’s goal is not just to get your teeth straight, but to provide you with the best possible alignment. Sometimes, this is possible by only straightening the lower set of teeth. If the problem extends beyond simply getting straighter teeth, you will need braces on both sets of teeth.
Braces are not as daunting as they once were. They are far smaller, slimmer, and more comfortable than they ever have been before. Whether you get braces on both sets of teeth or on just one row, they are a great way to straighten your teeth. They are not, however, the only option you have when it comes to getting straighter teeth and a better jaw alignment. Options like Invisalign might be a good alternative for those who want straighter teeth but do not want to deal with a full mouth of metal.