Orthodontic Relapse Solutions in Waterford, MI

Keep Your Smile Straight

You might assume that wearing braces should lead to teeth that are permanently straight—unfortunately, that’s not the case for many patients. Orthodontic relapse is common and can be extremely discouraging for those who experience it. Rather than letting months or years of orthodontic discipline in correcting your smile go to waste, let Dr. Sheehan and the experts at Oakland Family Dental provide you with solutions to keep your smile in good shape. 

Our objective is to assist you in getting back on track so you may enjoy your life with a stunning, healthy smile. Our Waterford, MI dentist is happy to serve residents of Shelby, Bloomfield Hills, Rochester, or the surrounding Michigan areas and help them keep the straight and healthy smiles they deserve with Invisalign.

Someone putting in their Invisalign aligner.

What is Orthodontic Relapse?

Orthodontic relapses happen when patients who have previously received orthodontic treatment start to experience their teeth shifting back towards their initial positioning. Relapses can be unexpected and every patient has the potential to experience an orthodontic relapse. Changes in tooth alignment can happen due to poor retainer after braces but they can also naturally as people grow and age. 

If you’re experiencing an orthodontic relapse, we advise you to seek treatment sooner rather than later. Read on to learn the signs to look for.

Gum Disease & Tooth Decay

Shifting teeth pose a serious health problem because they move out of their natural position, which can result in further complications such as gum disease or decay. Teeth shifting can create pockets where bacteria and plaque will build up. These areas are often hard to reach with routine brushing and flossing.

Patients who face any form of orthodontic relapse have an increased risk of developing severe oral health issues. Inflamed or bleeding gums are a critical sign to seek treatment.

Jaw Pain or Discomfort

The jaw has a heavy responsibility relating to biting, chewing, breathing, and so much more. In fact, the jaw joint is responsible for nearly all oral functions.

Having crooked teeth or a shifted bite can compromise joint health and cause these daily functions to be increasingly painful. Soreness and discomfort in your jaw is a telltale sign it’s time to make an appointment with your orthodontist in Waterford, MI.

New Crowding

Overcrowding is the most common and apparent symptom that you need braces. A pressing sign is when your teeth were crowded prior to your first orthodontic appointment. Many patients don’t realize it’s not unusual for teeth to shift back to their original placement if their positioning isn’t reinforced by regular retainer use.

Difficulty Chewing or Speaking

Another issue with shifting teeth is the strain it has on your ability to chew and speak with ease. When teeth don’t line up perfectly with each other, the bite pattern is thrown off. Shifting teeth can cause problems such as difficulty thoroughly chewing food or difficulty pronouncing certain words.

New Gaps

Not only do shifting teeth trigger crowding, but it also creates spaces between your teeth. It’s important to look for new gaps that weren’t there when you completed your braces care. In a proper, symmetrical smile, your teeth are fixed without overlapping.

Solutions for Adult Orthodontic Relapse

Here at Oakland Family Dental, we let you throw aside metal braces and choose a virtually invisible, painless treatment. Invisalign® treatment can correct and reverse orthodontic relapse in most patients. This clear alignment option lets you achieve your dream smile on your own terms.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is it worth it to get braces again?

While braces are often seen as a permanent fix to crooked teeth, this usually isn’t the case. If you don’t follow your orthodontist’s aftercare instructions, you may end up needing a second round of orthodontic treatment. At Oakland Family Dental, Dr. Sheehan can provide patients with innovative Invisalign treatment. Invisalign is a great option for patients looking to correct an orthodontic relapse without the hassle of metal wires and brackets.

How long does Invisalign take if you’ve already had braces?

Traditional braces typically require a longer treatment time than Invisalign. If you’ve already had metal braces in the past and your teeth are needing minor cosmetic straightening, your treatment duration will generally be shorter. On average, Invisalign treatment takes about 12 to 18 months to complete, depending on the complexity of your case.

Will my teeth stay straight after Invisalign?

While Invisalign can straighten your teeth in 12 to 18 months, it’s crucial that you continue to wear a retainer after treatment as directed by dentists. Neglecting to wear your retainer after your orthodontic treatment is completed will eventually affect your smile’s appearance and health.

Need to Correct Your Relapse? Call Dr. Sheehan Today

Thanks to our convenient Waterford office, we proudly help residents of Shelby, Bloomfield Hills, Rochester, and the surrounding areas on their journey to oral wellness. Your smile is an important part of who you are. Whether you’re correcting a relapse or thinking about getting braces for the first time, our expert dentist can help you achieve the smile of your dreams with Invisalign.

At Oakland Family Dental, we believe in complete transparency with our patients. If you have any questions about our care, don’t hesitate to give us a call at (248) 674-0384 or fill out our easy contact form at the top of this page. It’s time to smile with confidence again.