Dr. Stephen John, DDS
One of the biggest frustrations in maintaining our periodontal patients is dealing with crowded teeth. A crowded dentition makes it far more difficult for the patient, hygienist and dentist to clean and maintain the teeth. There is a high likelihood that plaque could be left behind after brushing your teeth due to the poor hygiene access. We know that plaque is the primary cause of periodontal disease. There is a concern that malpositioned teeth can increase the possibility of developing periodontal disease due to the plaque retention.
I feel that Orthodontic therapy is a great adjunct in the prevention of periodontal disease. I have to say that the periodontal condition of almost all of my perio patients who completed orthodontics has either improved or stabilized. It is important to state that not every patient can ‘avoid’ periodontal disease by having straight teeth. There are many factors why some patients develop this problem and some do not. Orthodontic therapy eliminates one of these important factors known to contribute to the cause of periodontal disease.
Over the years I had discussed the idea of Orthodontics to our adult patients, only to be cut off with statements like: “I do not want to wear braces” and “My job it too high profile to have a metal smile.” Many of these patients I saw go down hill over the years due to the poor hygiene access of these hard to maintain crowded areas.
Many of my patients became more receptive of the idea of orthodontics if they could use the ‘clear’ braces. Invisalign has provided us with a great option of getting those apprehensive patients into an orthodontic therapy that will give them great future benefits. While I must say that not every patient is an Invisalign candidate, the majority of our mild to moderate crowding cases are. I have also seem some amazing results from some of the Orthodontist that also treat the more advanced cases. It is up to the Orthodontist to decide which type of therapy is best for the patient.