"Heavens to Betsy!" What a predicament! Who doesn’t love the cuddly pink cat! Oh, wait, that’s SnagglePuss. We’re talking about SnaggleTooth (and not the fish either)!
A snaggle tooth is nothing more than a broken or misaligned tooth. Hey, we all have them. I have quite a number of them. In Japan, it’s actually a fashion statement!
But, if you don’t want them, or you want to minimize the stress, they can be fixed.
You should really talk to a dentist about how damaging the tooth is to your health and the best ways to fix it. It’s not recommended that you try any of these fixes on your own, it could cause more problems.
We’re going to show you the best ways to fix a snaggle tooth problem!
If your teeth are crooked because your jaw is crooked, you will most likely require braces. Braces are the most effective way for people to correct their teeth problems. We’re going to talk about that below. Did you have braces to fix your teeth? Let us know about your experience and we’ll share how braces have become easier to wear in the past few years!
If you allow your teeth to grow crooked, eventually they will become painful. Your teeth will move all your life, so you want them as straight as possible as early as possible. It is possible to go with braceless alignment, under several brand names like Invisalign.
Now, if you have a chipped, broken, or damaged tooth, these fixes are not for you. You really need a dentist to fix those before they cause damage to the nerves, which requires surgery. You can get more information in our article on Tooth Gaps!
Now, onto the Snaggle Tooth Corrections!
If your dentist thinks you need braces, they will refer you to an orthodontist. This is a person who specializes in fixing misaligned teeth and other severe problems.
Before determining if you need braces or not, they will ask questions about your health, conduct a clinical exam, take impressions of your teeth, take photos of your face and teeth, and order X-rays of the mouth and head. They make an appropriate treatment plan based on analysis of these pieces of information.
In some cases, a removable retainer will be all that's necessary. In other rare cases (especially when there is an extreme overbite or underbite), surgery may be necessary. In most cases, however, braces will be needed.
Don’t think of braces as the huge monsters of 50 years ago. Today, there are many options of braces depending on your needs.
Some people will be able to use mini-braces. They are much smaller and can be made of clear materials. This is often the first choice when dealing with just a few teeth that need to be moved, a short time period, or younger people.
"The brackets are smaller and we don't use all the bands or appliances that wrap all the way around the tooth like we used to. Now, we use bonded brackets that are a lot smaller or the clear braces that are a lot more cosmetic as far as their appearance" said Michael Sebastian, DDS, an orthodontist in Atlanta.
Braces today come in clear, tooth colored, and standard metal varieties. Some are even clear on top and metal on the bottom. Partial braces can even be behind the teeth with nothing in the front. You and your orthodontist will make that call together.
Braces aren’t for the teeth themselves. They are used to help manipulate the jawbone into holding the teeth in their proper position. Often times, the jawbone needs to be moved several millimeters. While this isn’t a big distance when you look at a ruler, it’s a huge distance to manipulate bone. That’s why it takes years to get rid of the braces.
But, They Don’t Have to Hurt
For a few days after an adjustment, most dentists agree people will feel discomfort. This is normal as the braces are pushing your teeth into a new angle. They say it should only last a few days and over-the-counter pain relievers should be enough to eliminate the pain. If not, the adjustment was too much too fast and needs to be reduced.
Everyone agreed that pain is no longer acceptable. In fact, most dentists agree that the painful braces of yesteryear were a mistake, a misunderstanding of what people go through. It doesn’t take any longer or create less perfect smiles to keep people pain-free.
The younger a person, the easier it is to adjust to the braces and the shorter the time to wear them. Up until about 18-20, the jaw bone is still growing. Fixing a problem before then becomes easier. That’s why many dentists recommend braces. Plus, it helps to form good self-esteem in children; first from overcoming the ridicule of having braces, then from the confidence of a good smile.
In adults, this is a little different. In the vast majority of cases, the braces are not to fix a problem, but for cosmetic reasons. People are using braces to create the perfect smile! Fortunately, in adults, orthodontists are not seeking perfection in teeth nor are they dealing with an every expanding mouth. They can focus on a good look.
Dentists will tell you that when teeth are aligned, problems decrease. This is true. But, most of the adults already have teeth that are aligned well enough.
It is your choice. If there is a problem, it should be fixed. If you want a straight smile, braces are the option.
The cost of braces varies, but you can expect the cost for conventional metal braces to average $5,000. The more cosmetic your braces become, the higher the cost. Some insurance carriers provide partial coverage for orthodontic treatment, so check with your insurance provider for the specifics of what your policy covers.
Can Invisalign Fix A Snaggle Tooth?
There is some debate about using clear alignment-type retainers to fix snaggle teeth. Some of the snaggle tooth before and after on the website certainly attest to this working.
Adults are choosing retainers to fix their teeth more than braces. For one, it’s cheaper. Two, you go about your normal life without disruption.
The aligners are easily removable, so you can continue to brush and floss your teeth as you normally would. While you do wear the retainer nearly constantly, you do remove it for eating, brushing, and kissing (trust me, I kissed someone with a retainer and it wasn’t a nice experience!).
You don’t need to worry about food getting stuck in your braces. You just need to remember good dental hygiene. Because you put the retainer back in when you are finished eating, you need to brush and floss often. Leaving food bits in your teeth is asking for cavities. No sense ruining a good alignment job with a filling!
Retainers are better for sports and music. Because of the contact nature of sports, you don’t need to worry about braces cutting your gums. The constant pressure on the mouth that comes from playing an instrument is greatly reduced. Also, for adults, retainers don’t change your embouchure.
Retainers work in a wide variety of cases, but not all. When the jaw needs to be adjusted, not just the teeth, this won’t work. It also doesn’t work for severe cases. Other problems with your teeth can prevent the use of retainers; your teeth must be in good repair for this work. For an undescribed reason, when a tooth is simply twisted, retainers don’t work. No reliable source states why, just that twisting cannot be fixed by anything but braces.
Also, since nearly all the retainers are created before you being, any problem that may arise will result in a whole new treatment plan. This raises the cost enormously.
Some dentists find people start good with the retainers, but slowly forget them. While this doesn’t cause problems, it prolongs the treatments and raises the costs. It’s recommend you wear the retainer for 22 hours per day.
And you will visit the dentist more often, which can also raise the price. Every 2 weeks you need a new retainer * and most of the time it’s fitted by the dentist before you start wearing it.
Dental Arch Adjustment – An Adjunct of Braces
This adjustment is basically a spot treatment to create more space in your mouth. A bar is inserted into your jawbone and progressively lengthened. This creates more space for your teeth.
Often, this is most often used with braces, it can be used on its own. When used with braces, the bar is attached to the braces, not the bone.
For some people, the simple widening of your mouth allows more room for your teeth. As the bone expands, your teeth spread out. Alignment issues can naturally resolve. Often, this procedure is used when the jaw is misshapen. It can often be caught in children very young and becomes a quick fix (mere months rather than years).
This is a technique used on younger people. As the bones are still forming, this is a much easier process. It is generally not used on adults because the bones are formed.
If your tooth is severely out of alignment, or moving it back would cause further damage, removal of the tooth is an option. The space would then be open for an implant.
Most dentists only use this as a last resort. They want to keep all of your teeth. It’s been noted that if a tooth is pulled early in life, the chances of losing all your teeth goes up exponentially. It can also lead to other teeth drifting into the now open space, creating further gaps.
But, some people ask how much does it cost to fix a snaggle tooth. Removing a tooth is the cheapest option. An implant is still lower cost than braces. But, then you lose the tooth and it’s not something you can put back.
We really recommend considering all options before this one. Teeth are an once-in-a-lifetime part you don’t want to waste.
There aren’t much in the way of how to fix a snaggle tooth at home. Little things, like exercises, dental bands *, and manually pushing a tooth abound on the internet, but they have no backing from dentists.
In fact, many of these can make things worse.
Some jaw exercises strengthen the jaw, others create conditions that will cause damage. Pushing the jaw too far to one side or the other can result in ear, jaw, and neck problems.
Dental bands are designed to close a small gap in teeth. The basic premise is that both teeth move and the rest of your teeth are in good alignment. A few snaggle teeth may qualify for this fix, but the vast majority do not.
If you pull on teeth that are not in good alignment, you create further problems. You can actually distort the jaw, then you are talking about serious surgery.
If you manually push a tooth, all sorts of problems arise. You may push too hard and damage the root of the tooth. You could create a loose tooth, and eventually lose the tooth altogether!
Besides, it really doesn’t work. There isn’t enough constant pressure or consistent direction to move the tooth back into its proper place. Plus, if there are underlying jaw problems, it will never work.
It is possible to fix a snaggle tooth without braces, but braces are the best option. Snaggle tooth braces have become easier and gentler.
Clear alignment-type retainers, like Invisalign, also provide relief in less severe cases. Talk to your dentist about the best option.
Still, the number one way to avoid a snaggle tooth is to help children avoid damaging their mouths to begin with: don’t suck on things, don’t grind your teeth, and don’t put thing in your mouth other than food and drinks!
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