October is National Orthodontic Health Month!

National Orthodontic Health Month is October

Orthodontists across the country are working to raise awareness about the benefits of orthodontic treatment and to celebrate the benefits of a healthy smile during the month of October. If you want to improve your child’s (or your own!) oral health, simply hiding Halloween candy this month isn’t going to cut it. The specialists at the Texas Association of Orthodontists are here to explain why a healthy mouth starts with a properly aligned smile.

What is Orthodontic Treatment?

Simply put, orthodontic treatment seeks to achieve proper tooth and jaw alignment and positioning. A variety of appliances, such as braces, retainers and aligners can be used to correct various bite issues. While many treatment plans will be most effective on children whose jaws are still developing, adults can still achieve a healthy bite.

Why is Orthodontic Treatment Important?

Orthodontic treatment by qualified orthodontists in Texas is an important part of any oral care routine for a variety of reasons:

  1. A healthy bite – When the jaw is properly positioned, it performs best. Misaligned jaws cause a plethora of issues, including difficulty chewing, speech impediments, and even more serious issues such as sleep apnea.
  2. Correct tooth alignment – Consider our teeth to be puzzle pieces. When they are not properly positioned, the other pieces around them begin to wear and tear. The same is true for our teeth. When they are not properly aligned, everything does not fit together in a harmonious manner, and when they do not match, your teeth are exposed to years of extensive wear, leading to an increase in dental health problems down the road. For example, gum disease caused by plaque buildup, difficulty flossing and cleaning teeth, difficulty chewing, a buildup of bacteria in the mouth that can lead to chronic bad breath and even heart problems, frequent headaches, and TMJ are just a few of the problems that can arise from improper alignment.
  3. An aesthetically pleasing smile – Whether you like it or not, having a straight smile is increasingly common in today’s society, and those with straight teeth are commonly perceived as being more successful overall. It has been demonstrated that the impression you make with your smile can mean the difference between gaining opportunities and being passed over.

Challenging Misconceptions

Another significant benefit of National Orthodontic Health Month is that it educates patients and the public about orthodontic treatment while dispelling certain myths. The American Association of Orthodontists lists the following as common misconceptions:

  1. An orthodontist is anyone who fits braces or aligners.
  2. Orthodontic treatment is expensive.
  3. Straight teeth do not require office visits.
  4. Orthodontic treatment can take several years.
  5. Orthodontic treatment is only for cosmetic purposes.
  6. Orthodontists exclusively use braces.
  7. Orthodontic treatment is only available to children.

How to Get Involved in National Orthodontic Health Month

With patient education at the forefront, October is the perfect time to visit an orthodontist in Texas! Here are a few pointers to keep in mind:

  1. The American Association of Orthodontics recommends that children see an orthodontist by the age of seven. This allows the doctor to determine whether there are any problems. This early start enables the orthodontist to detect early warning signs and address current issues while the jaw is still growing.
  2. Before visiting the orthodontist, your child does not need to have lost all their baby teeth. Going before your child’s baby teeth have all fallen out, on the other hand, is advantageous. Because the jaw is still growing, this allows for early detection of potential problems and, in some cases, more effective treatment outcomes.
  3. As an adult, you can go to the orthodontist! While there has been an increase in the number of tooth aligners available for adults who “can’t” be seen by an orthodontist, this is purely a marketing ploy. You will be amazed at the plethora of options available for adults when you visit an Orthodontic specialist.

This October doesn’t have to be all about the tricks and treats! Set up a complimentary consultation with a Texas Orthodontic Specialist today and prioritize your family’s oral health. You’ll be happy you did!  Click here to find an Orthodontic specialist near you.