In good physiological conditions, the teeth appear harmoniously on the two dental jaws. They are well aligned and can therefore work efficiently by distributing the forces between them, particularly during chewing and swallowing.
WHAT IS A DENTAL MALPOSITION?
When there is not enough room, or an excess of space in the jaw, the teeth are placed as they can, with a risk of bad position, overlapping, excessive spacing, gaping between the lower and upper teeth.
Some teeth will be too far forward or too far back. The eruption of one will be hampered by the presence of another. There will be a partial overlap of two teeth, etc.
WHAT are the RISKS?
- Obvious aesthetic damage
- Uneven pressure when chewing: some teeth will work harder than others
- Occlusion problems (jaw closure) with repercussions on the entire temporomandibular joint
- Weakening (risk of fracture) and abnormal wear of the teeth
- Speech problems
- Biting of the gums
- Incomplete dental hygiene: brushing difficulties, gingivitis or even periodontitis
- POSSIBLE CAUSES
- A congenital origin: the gene encoding the size of the teeth is different from the gene encoding the size of the dental arches. There may therefore be a disharmony between teeth and arches.
- Dental delay: the late arrival of permanent teeth means that there is a lack of space for the last ones.
- A functional origin: the position of the teeth is the result of forces applied in the mouth (chewing, pressure of the tongue during swallowing). Abnormalities in these functions (infantile swallowing with pressure of the tongue on the teeth, mouth breathing for example) then lead to malposition of the teeth.
SOLUTIONS AND TREATMENTS
Malpositions can be corrected at different ages and with different means.
- Abandonment of the thumb and the pacifier at a reasonable age
- Functional rehabilitation (swallowing, speech, breathing favoring the nasal rather than the mouth, etc.)
- Extraction of temporary teeth if their prolonged presence is a discomfort
- Specific orthodontic treatments according to age and malposition