WFAA 8 ABC: Your bite could be causing bigger health issues than you realize

Fixing your teeth is about more than aesthetics and vanity. If your teeth don’t touch in the right places, orthodontists say, it can damage your teeth and cause you a host of additional health problems.

Rebecca Ormsby has a natural million dollar smile. But behind it, she was keeping a secret.

“People didn’t really know that there was a problem,” said Ormsby. “This was completely a functional issue.”

She had what is called an open bite. Only her wisdom teeth touched.

“So she wasn’t able to chew anything or cut anything with her teeth,” said Dallas Orthodontist Omar Issa of Issa Orthodontics.

He says if you can’t chew, the first step in the digestive process isn’t happening.

That made life unbearable for Ormsby — who was unable to properly chew for 20 years.

“I didn’t want to go out and eat with friends; it took me forever to eat a salad,” she said.

Ultimately, that led to stress and digestive problems. She sought help from Dr. Issa, who mapped out a plan. First Ormsby would get her wisdom teeth removed. Then, she would need braces.

“With the braces and a custom made wire for her teeth, we can get her where we need her to be,” said Issa.

After six months, Ormsby got her braces off and her teeth now touch in all the right places.

“I had no idea what I had been missing,” said Ormsby, who has since enjoyed feasting on all the foods she had given up on decades ago.

“I could not believe how much better my life could be. It’s really great,” said Ormsby.

Originally published on WFAA 8 ABC.