Can Braces Help Patients with Missing Teeth?

Alpharetta, GA – Misaligned teeth are more than unsightly, they can cause oral problems for patients, as well. While these issues are normally found and treated during adolescence so serious problems can be avoided, that doesn’t always happen. More adult patients are turning to braces to help correct their alignment issues, but they may also have other issues.

“For some patients, missing teeth can be a problem,” says Dr. Nima Hajibaik, a Johns Creek orthodontist. “Orthodontic treatment can help patients who are missing teeth and improve the health of their teeth and gums. Braces are recommended for patients with overcrowded or misaligned teeth. For patients who have experienced tooth loss, the missing teeth may actually be what is causing their alignment problems due to the surrounding teeth shifting locations.”

If a tooth is missing, the surrounding teeth may cave in or shift out of their proper place and into the empty space. This can cause periodontal, esthetic and even functional problems for the patient. Orthodontic treatment can correct or prevent this from happening. Braces will provide proper alignment, which will allow your dentist to replace the missing teeth in the future, if you choose to do so.

If you are missing a tooth, your Alpharetta orthodontist will take this into account when applying your braces. He or she will also consider any future treatment you may be in need of when creating your treatment plan. If you plan to restore the missing tooth, the space may need to be widened to make room. In other cases, the space may need to simply be maintained. Depending on which route you choose, either an open or closed coil will be placed before applying your braces. The remaining teeth can shift as necessary, allowing the space necessary for dental restoration of the lost tooth.

“This means that not only can braces help alignment issues in patients missing teeth, they may actually be beneficial to these patients,” says Dr. Hajibaik. “Braces can align the surrounding teeth properly, close any small gaps between teeth, open up the space left by a missing tooth to make room for restoration, and prevent surrounding teeth from moving into the space left by the missing tooth. Braces can actually make it easier to replace the missing teeth.”

If you’re missing a tooth and have concerns about the alignment of your teeth, consider scheduling a consultation with Dr. Hajibaik. He can work with you to create an orthodontic treatment plan that will take into consideration your missing tooth and any other dental issues you may be experiencing. Properly aligned teeth will lead to better oral health for you.

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