Here’s something you probably don’t think about very often: how much your teeth affect the shape of your face. But the reality is, your teeth have a significant impact on your jawline and bone structure, so when problems arise with your teeth, they can possibly have an effect on the look of your face.

It’s not all doom and gloom, though. When it comes to tooth health and alignment, you have several options at your disposal should you choose to take advantage of them. The advancements in dentistry and orthodontic work have birthed a number of technologies that can be utilised to help give you better-looking teeth and a more symmetrical smile so that you can feel good about showing off those pearly whites. If you need some more encouragement, look at some of these before and after stories.

Here are a few different issues that can affect the shape and quality of your smile.

Shifting Teeth

Shifting teeth can cause an uneven smile, a deeper bite and shorten the length of your face. This can sometimes lead to overcrowding, where some teeth go further into the gumline, or start shifting over or under one another. It may also cause the opposite problem of unsightly gaps.

Age can also have an effect on shifting teeth. Over time our teeth tend to move inward, and if we are constantly clenching our jaw muscles it can make the problem worse. As we age the support for the soft tissue and bones in our face decreases, and this includes tooth volume. Gravity takes over because there is a lack of support for the cheeks and lips, causing our face shape to shift.

In all these cases, your teeth are impacting the jawline which in turn has an impact on the look of your smile.

Missing Teeth

Missing teeth can give your face a sunken look. The reason this happens is that when you chew, you are exercising your jaw. Having missing teeth can be a detriment to the quality and quantity of this exercise and can lead to degradation and atrophy. The result is a sunken appearance in the face.

Even a single missing tooth can cause some shifting of your other teeth, which can create changes to your facial structure.

Abscessed Teeth

Abscessed teeth trigger bone loss and affect your sinuses. Infection can spread through a pathway of very thin bone between your maxillary sinuses and the roots of your molars. If this happens, you run the risk of destroying facial bones, which will impact the look of your entire face.

Impacted Teeth

Impacted teeth are teeth that do not emerge beyond the gumline. When these teeth do not grow as large as typical adult teeth, this can affect the shape of the smile and cause asymmetry. Even though we typically associate wisdom teeth with these kinds of issues, your canines are most commonly affected. Since canines are toward the front of the mouth, if they grow shorter than the surrounding teeth, it can cause an unbalanced look to your smile.

There are a number of issues that result from impacted teeth, including:

Inflammation of the gums
Issues with alignment of the jaw
Gum disease
Tooth decay
Discomfort and pain

In extreme cases, the only thing you can do is have the problem teeth extracted. If you are having severe problems with impacted teeth or any of these other tooth issues, please see your dentist or orthodontic professional immediately.

Your teeth have a huge impact on the shape and length of your face. Missing teeth or teeth below the gumline can drastically affect your daily life. Don’t let preventable teeth problems negatively impact a good smile.

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