Wearing braces can do more than just straighten your teeth. It can have a dramatic effect on your face shape, too. Do you want to know how orthodontic braces really work and what changes they can make?
Orthodontics is a branch of dentistry that focuses on correcting misaligned teeth and jaws. This can be achieved through various appliances and treatments, one of which is the use of braces. Braces come in many forms, but one thing that often surprises people is that braces not only influence the smile but are also known to alter the shape of the face itself.
It may seem strange that something as simple as wearing braces can actually change the shape of your face, but it is true. In this article, we will go over the potential facial changes you can experience when wearing braces and how they can differ from adolescents to adults.
How do braces work?
Braces use brackets and wires to correct a variety of orthodontic issues. The brackets are attached to each tooth, and then a thin wire is threaded through the brackets. The tension on the wire exerts pressure on the periodontal ligament, which gradually moves the teeth into their proper position. Your dentist or orthodontist will make periodic adjustments to the wire in order to ensure that your teeth maintain proper alignment over time.
How can this orthodontic treatment affect your facial shape?
Orthodontic treatment can not only improve your tooth alignment but also have an effect on the positioning and form of your skeletal features—like your jaw—ultimately resulting in a slight change to your facial shape. Orthodontic treatments such as braces help to position the jaws in their correct place and balance out any flaws. With proper oversight by an orthodontist, this type of treatment can make subtle improvements to the facial appearance.
Orthodontists are highly trained professionals who understand how teeth and jaws interact with one another and are able to adjust them accordingly. With treatment, you may begin to notice changes in how your lower face appears, including a squarer jawline or more striking cheekbones.
How it Affects Children and Teenagers
Braces can have a significant effect on an adolescent’s facial shape. Braces strategically move the teeth to improve their alignment, which changes the way the lips and jaws line up with one another. This can result in a straighter smile and can correct facial imbalances.
In addition, traditional braces can improve problems related to an overbite or underbite. By adjusting the bite, the face can appear more aesthetically pleasing overall. However, it should be noted that these effects are not immediate; they typically take several months or even years to manifest fully as the teeth slowly adjust to their new positions.
How it Affects Adults
Metal braces can certainly have a positive impact on an adult’s facial shape. By fixing misaligned, overcrowded, and crooked teeth, braces can improve the symmetry of your face and reduce any gaps that exist between teeth.
With braces, many adults find their facial features appear more symmetrical and balanced. Since your cheeks are supported by healthy, properly aligned teeth and jaws, some people notice improved facial volume with braces if they previously had sunken cheeks. Ultimately, having braces as an adult may affect your facial structure in a way that boosts your confidence in the long run and gives you a more youthful appearance.
Possible Changes to the Facial Structure
Now that we’ve discussed how orthodontic treatment can affect the facial shape in general terms, let’s dive into some specific changes that can occur.
Braces can affect the appearance of your jawline and ultimately provide a more balanced facial profile. As braces reposition and align the lower and upper teeth, they will work to improve the appearance of the jawline by creating an even bite which will have an overall positive effect on your facial shape. With an improved jaw alignment, the jaw bone may appear narrower or less angular, depending on individual circumstances. Additionally, braces can also help to close gaps between the teeth, preventing sagging around the jaw area and making it look more toned and structured.
Believe it or not, orthodontic treatment can also have an impact on your nose shape. Braces can have an effect on the overall appearance of the nose by affecting the alignment of the teeth. Straightening your teeth with braces can help bring balance to your face.
Lips and Mouth
Braces can also affect the appearance of the lips and mouth. When braces are first fitted, they have a tendency to pull the lips outward, making them appear larger or fuller. After some time, however, the teeth are straightened, and this effect may go away.
Also, braces can affect how the top and bottom teeth come together after being adjusted to fit properly – this can lead to a slightly different lip shape overall. As braces tighten over time, they can make temporary indentations in the soft tissues of your lips and cheeks from where brackets and bands are attached to them.
The Benefits of Braces
In addition to the potential changes braces can bring to your facial structure, there are many other benefits that come with wearing them. Orthodontic treatment can help to improve dental hygiene and reduce the risk of certain oral health problems, including tooth decay and gum disease. Since braces also make it easier to chew food, they can help you eat more effectively and enjoy a healthier diet.
Overall, braces treatment can be a great way to enhance your facial shape and give you a beautiful smile you’ve always wanted!
Contact Us to Learn More About Braces
If you’re considering braces and want to learn more about how they can affect your facial shape, contact us today! At our practice, we understand the importance of creating the ideal smile and are dedicated to helping you achieve it. Our experienced team of orthodontists will be able to provide you with a comprehensive assessment, answer any questions that you may have, and discuss the best treatment plan for your individual needs.
Give us a call today to set up a consultation!