What is the first thing you notice about someone when you meet them? For most people, it’s the person’s smile. That smile says a lot about a person.
Are they confident and outgoing, or are they more reserved and shy?
Beyond your smile, people typically notice the symmetry of your face next. Most people have some degree of asymmetry, be it uneven brow lines, offset nostrils, or even unaligned jaw shape. It’s more normal than not to have an asymmetrical face. Sometimes, though, our facial asymmetry is more pronounced and may be a cause of other oral or general health concerns.
Here at The Smile Patio Orthodontics, we know that having an asymmetrical face and smile can affect your confidence and overall oral health. We are passionate about helping you achieve the symmetry that will give you a radiant and healthy smile. Let’s take a look at the relationship between your facial balance and the ways orthodontic treatment can fix your smile and your confidence.
Effects of Facial Asymmetry
Studies have found that the symmetry of one’s face can affect how attractive one appears to others and that humans usually prefer a more symmetrical look. This idea can lead some patients to seek orthodontic treatment to achieve the desired aesthetic. While nobody has perfect facial symmetry, there are cases where your asymmetry may be more than just aesthetically complicated. Facial asymmetry can disrupt the way you speak and eat and even cause jaw or head pains when it comes to functionality.
In some patients, facial asymmetry is a symptom or side effect of an underlying and undiagnosed issue like sleep apnea or a TMJ (temporomandibular joint) disorder. These conditions can have a much more drastic impact on your health than just a crooked smile. At The Smile Patio Orthodontics in Vista, California, our experienced team can provide specialized care for your unique needs to give you the beautiful, confident smile you deserve.
Causes of Facial Asymmetry
The most common culprit of facial asymmetry is your jaw alignment or bite. For ideal symmetry and function, you should have a very slight overbite to allow for talking and chewing and prevent excess wear and strain on your teeth and gums. Patients with severe overbites or other bite issues like a crossbite or underbite notice more disruption in the uniformity of their facial structure.
You may think that if you managed to make it to adulthood with a pretty symmetrical face, you’re in the clear. While that is typically true, and while your bones are no longer growing, your cartilage is, and it can alter your facial symmetry as you age. But there are other reasons you may face asymmetry that you may not have thought about besides genetics and aging, such as uneven muscles, accidents, and infections.
There are also severe health concerns that can cause facial asymmetry. Bell’s Palsy is a viral infection that causes facial paralysis of the muscles on one side of your face. Another less common condition is called Torticollis, or “twisted neck,” which causes your neck muscles to rest in an abnormal position and result in facial asymmetry. This condition usually only occurs in the womb. Both of these conditions are generally temporary.
How can Orthodontics help?
If you have issues with facial asymmetry, there’s a good chance you already know about it and have wondered what could be done. Luckily, Dr. Jonathan Albaugh and his skilled team have plenty of experience in correcting facial asymmetry with advanced options. We can evaluate the relationship between your facial features and your oral health to create a treatment plan that best fits your needs! Let’s look at a few ways we can help.
The most common and best-practiced solution to facial asymmetry in the past was jaw surgery or orthognathic surgery. That procedure is now reserved for extreme cases and patients who are not likely to see adequate results from orthodontic treatments like braces.
For cases that are considered typical or mild, such as mild underbite or overbite, our doctor utilizes braces or Invisalign to correct your symmetry. Don’t let the prospect of braces deter you from looking at the face of your dreams. Modern technology has made braces much smaller and more of a comfortable process. For those looking for the bang of traditional braces without the buck of an adolescent appearance, clear and ceramic braces swap that metal for a clear or tooth-colored ceramic that makes your orthodontic treatment a bit more inconspicuous.
In certain situations where the facial asymmetry is caused by an upper jaw that is too small, a palatal expander is another orthodontic treatment option that uses high-grade metal bands attached to corresponding molars and joined high in the center of the roof of the mouth by a screw. This appliance is tightened at the screw with a unique key daily to slowly and carefully expand the upper palate to create the desired symmetry.
In most cases, a patient’s facial asymmetry is resolved with non-invasive treatments and by pairing state-of-the-art technology with our thorough understanding of the movement and growth of the teeth and jaws.
Trust The Smile Patio Orthodontics for an aesthetic AND functional smile.
A confident smile is life-changing. It makes the best first impression because it allows a person’s inner beauty to shine. At The Smile Patio Orthodontics, we create the smiles of your dreams because people lead more successful lives when they have a smile they love! Many people with crooked teeth feel insecure about their smiles. We are determined to raise that confidence through customized treatment plans with braces or clear aligners to give you a beautiful, confident smile!
Our dedication to our patients shines through our exceptional care, and we pride ourselves on staying up-to-date on the latest orthodontic treatments and technologies. Schedule a FREE consultation with us when you’re ready to start your orthodontic journey to facial symmetry! We can’t wait to help you create a smile that changes your life!