Scotts Valley and Santa Cruz, CA
Many orthodontists opt to remove permanent teeth before beginning a treatment program such as braces or Invisalign. These extractions are performed to create more room in the mouth for straightened teeth. However, the dentists in Scotts Valley at Ebrahimian Integrative Dentistry believe positive results often can be obtained without having to pull teeth for orthodontic purposes.
Removing healthy permanent teeth has its risks
Losing permanent teeth—even by design—can raise the risk of certain oral health problems later in life, such as gum disease. Another inevitable consequence of losing teeth is the deterioration of the supporting bone structure, which begins to weaken because it no longer is receiving stimulation from the tooth roots. If the bone structure deteriorates enough, it can compromise the adjacent teeth.
Usually, orthodontists extract premolars before orthodontic treatment begins. Premolars are crucial to the process of chewing small pieces of food. Removing these teeth means that your canine teeth have to take on all this additional work, which will exert inordinate wear and tear on the canine teeth over time. Premolars also play an important role in facial structure; if they are removed, your other teeth slide back into the mouth to fill the vacant space. This can make the face, cheekbones, and chin all develop a flatter-looking appearance.
When the teeth shift after removing the premolars, this also creates less room in the mouth for the tongue, which can increase the likelihood of mouth breathing. If you breathe habitually through the mouth, you become more likely to snore, which is one of the major warning signs of obstructive sleep apnea, a serious sleep breathing disorder that disrupts your ability to get rest and increases your susceptibility to chronic, systemic, life-threatening ailments such as cardiac disease, hypertension, diabetes, and even cancer.
Benefit from the advance of orthodontic science
Although the practice of removing teeth prior to orthodontic treatment remains rather widespread, the science behind these extractions is somewhat antiquated. The concept of these extractions originated more than 50 years ago based on the premise that jawbones do not continue to grow once a person reaches puberty. Subsequent research, however, suggests that is not the case.
At Ebrahimian Integrative Dentistry, we practice functional orthodontics in Scotts Valley, which looks to achieve harmony throughout the orofacial complex—not just straighten teeth. We look at the big picture: examining why teeth do not all fit in the mouth and take steps to create wider dental arches that will allow for more room for your teeth and also encourage the development of a larger airway.
Functional Orthodontics in Los Gatos
If you are planning to have your child seek orthodontic treatment, it is important to ask your orthodontist some key questions before the work begins. You can trust the dentists at Ebrahimian Integrative Dentistry not to make a hasty decision and remove teeth prior to treatment unless absolutely necessary. To learn more about how we provide orthodontic treatment that benefits better overall oral health, call us at (831) 824-5111 to schedule an appointment.
Ebrahimian Integrative Dentistry serves patients located in the California communities of Los Gatos, Santa Cruz, and Scotts Valley.