Invisalign treatment and preventative health care: the link between crooked teeth, gum disease and overall wellness
By Tracy Taddey, DDS
Bombarded with glossy media images of Hollywood starlets sporting megawatt smiles, its no wonder that today’s dental patients tend to associate teeth-straightening techniques with cosmetic dentistry alone. However, despite impressive aesthetic improvements to straightening technology in recent years, a pretty smile is only one of the perks achieved by correcting malocclusion – the dental term for crowded, crooked, or otherwise abnormally spaced teeth. Dental health professionals recommend straightening options like Invisalign to individuals with misaligned teeth in order to prevent both gum disease and other systemic health problems. Far from simply improving the appearance of one’s smile, Invisalign can serve as a powerful preventative tool to keep teeth, gums and the rest of the body strong and healthy for years to come.
To the untrained eye, improperly aligned teeth seem like a purely cosmetic concern. But to a trained dentist, crooked teeth and other forms of malocclusion are a strong risk factor for periodontal disease, abnormal stress on the teeth and jaws, premature wear and tear and even eventual tooth loss. Malocclusion affects 74% of American adults, increasing the likelihood of red, tender or bleeding gums, tartar buildup and halitosis in the majority of the nation’s adult population. Left untreated, these symptoms can progress from gingivitis to advanced periodontitis – a condition that in turn puts affected individuals at risk for serious health problem. Various studies have linked periodontitis to such conditions as coronary heart disease, stroke, diabetes complications, adverse pregnancy outcomes and respiratory diseases: therefore, it is essential to maintain good oral health and hygiene, and to seek treatment for malocclusion from a qualified and experienced dentist.
Improved technology for straighter, healthier, more beautiful teeth – without the hassle of braces
At our family owned and operated La Jolla dentist office, we believe strongly in preventative care to treat the whole patient – and that means working hard to keep gum disease at bay. However, undergoing a teeth straightening treatment needn’t be uncomfortable or inconvenient; and at our practice, we recommend Invisalign as an ideal way for our adult patients to combat malocclusion and prevent periodontal disease without the discomfort or aesthetic compromise associated with conventional braces.
Invisalign works by using a set of clear aligners that are customized to fit each patient’s individual smile to straighten teeth over time. Treatment duration varies for each patient, but in most cases the straightening process is complete within one year. During treatment, patients can wear the aligners comfortably throughout the day and night – and also remove them easily to eat, drink, brush and floss as needed for maximum convenience. Not only that, but Invisalign patients only need to see their dentists every month or two to track treatment progress and update the aligners’ structure, reducing the burden on patient schedules and budgets alike.
Invisalign is FDA approved and covered by some insurance plans – and best of all, it allows your natural smile to shine through throughout the entire treatment process. To learn more or to request information about financing options, visit us online: www.lajolladentist.com.
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