Numerous studies in the past 20 years have linked chronic (prolonged) malocclusions (‘bad bites’) with premature wear of the teeth, fractured teeth, bone loss, gum recession, poor esthetics, and worsening temporomandibular dysfunction (TMD). Misaligned (crooked) teeth can lead to increased difficulty with oral hygiene and in turn lead to decay and gum disease. Fortunately, advancements in orthodontics have made treatment much more patient-friendly, allowing adults to continue with their daily routines, singing, playing musical instruments, dining out, dating, and more.
Since adults do not grow and they often have other dental requirements, the orthodontic treatment is usually only part of the overall treatment plan. Also, certain bite problems are skeletal and may require more invasive treatment, including temporary anchorage devices, implants or even jaw surgery. Close coordination may be required among the orthodontist, oral surgeon, periodontist, endodontist, and family dentist to assure that the treatment plan is managed well.