Most people when considering braces are concerned about the cost of the braces, which is perfectly normal. But fewer people consider what the cost of not getting braces is?
What are the social, emotional, and even financial liabilities of having crooked teeth? Let’s talk honestly. We live in a superficial world that values youth, beauty, and a perfect pearly-white smile. Genetics account for the good fortune of being born beautiful, or tall, but if you’re struggling with crooked teeth cosmetic and dental surgery can help a lot. There are also numerous health implications that are caused by misaligned teeth and jaw bones. Let’s take a look at the true cost of not getting braces.
The Gaping Mouth of Inequality
In 2017, a University of British Columbia study examined the realities of integrating incarcerated women back into society. One of the notable results of this study was the lack of access to regular dental care among low-income individuals. Regular dental check-ups are not just about cleaning your teeth; there are crucial medical issues that can be identified when you see a dentist regularly.
Diabetes and cancerous lesions, eating disorders and drug abuse can each be evident in your mouth. A Maclean’s article which focused on the study noted that hospital emergency rooms are filled with people who are suffering from poor oral health.
The physical effects are clear but what about the socioeconomic factors? How likely are you to hire a person who has missing teeth? Increasingly, teeth have become an indicator of social status and income. Have a beautiful, white, straight smile? You must have money because it can be costly to take care of your oral health. For those who are unable to afford it, there’s a visible indication of their financial status smack in the middle of their face for all to see.
So, the Question Is…Can You Afford Not to Get Braces?
Maybe you refused to get braces when you were a child and your parents went along with it because it seemed more important to pay for something else. Now, you may be looking at your own crooked teeth in the mirror or your children’s teeth and reflecting on what it has cost you over the years. Is a lifetime of bad teeth really what you want for your children?
What Are Some of the Causes of Crooked Teeth?
There are many factors that lead to crooked teeth. Some of the most significant include:
- A small mouth will suffer if there are too many teeth. This can result in overcrowding forcing the teeth to grow in crooked.
- Upper or lower jaws that are out of alignment can result in an overbite or underbite.
- Losing baby teeth too early or losing adult teeth can cause crooked teeth or a misaligned bite.
- Clenching your jaw (whether consciously or not) causes pain and some potential for the teeth to move position over time.
- It’s not just an old wives’ tale, thumb sucking and pacifiers can affect the teeth and jaw alignment.
The Physical Realities of Crooked Teeth
Crooked teeth can cause self-esteem issues which may lead to depression and other related health issues that could follow you for life. In addition to the mental side effects, there are also physical problems that can manifest with crooked teeth:
- Teeth that are crooked can hide bacteria in places that are awkward to reach.
- Bacteria and hidden food in the teeth lead to bad breath.
- Bacteria left unattended can cause infection and add a whole new set of dental concerns besides how often you floss.
- Misaligned teeth wear on each other over time and increase the likelihood that you will need to have treatment.
- Teeth that stick out are at greater risk of being chipped.
You Can Put A Value on Your Smile
It’s never too late to get braces and turn that frown upside down. Whether you’re investing in your own self-worth or the future happiness of your child, the cost of braces is minimal in comparison to the cost of lost job opportunities, low self-esteem, and possible depression. At Bradford Family Dentistry, we offer many options to help you get on your way to a beautiful smile. Our goal is to help you achieve an affordable, great-looking smile that you will be proud to show off.