What Causes Crooked Teeth and How To Fix Them?

What Causes Crooked Teeth and How To Fix Them?

Every human being has features that distinguish him from the one next to him. If we consider teeth, they can be long, short, broad, wide, tilted, or crooked. Rest all features are usually acceptable by people, but what causes crooked teeth, and how do they get fixed? 

Let’s have an in-depth look into this matter.

What Causes Crooked Teeth?

Crooked teeth are misaligned teeth which are aesthetically acceptable to some people. However, many people do not accept crooked teeth and try to find ways to correct them. Thus, to understand what causes crooked teeth, let’s look into the following reasons:

What causes crooked teeth in babies?

Let’s answer a few pertinent questions related to babies before going into overall causes:

Why Are Baby Teeth Crooked?

Baby teeth can be crooked because babies’ gums are narrow—more than the space is needed to accommodate these teeth. However, as the baby grows, the size of the gums grows enough to make space for permanent teeth. 

It’s essential to understand that having crooked baby teeth does not suggest that the permanent teeth will also be crooked. 

Can Thumbsucking Cause Crooked Teeth?

Yes, thumbsucking can cause crooked teeth. According to research, Thumb sucking in a child less than two years of age requires no treatment. In a three- to four-year-old child, thumb sucking may be secondary to changes in the child’s emotional environment, and treatment should be directed at correcting the underlying problem. Thumb sucking that persists beyond the age of six years should be treated. 

The dentist may suggest options like:

  • Counseling of both – the child and the parents.
  • Changes in the child’s environment according to behavior after discussion with the pediatric dentist.
  • A mitten on that hand. 
  • Use of gloves
  • A habit crib is a dental device put in the mouth of the baby. It makes the baby uncomfortable while sucking the thumb. Moreover, babies generally discontinue the habit when there is a change in the thumb-sucking experience.
  • Never discontinue the habit abruptly.

Parents need to note that it is essential to keep a check on their babies from day one and stop him or them from sucking their thumbs. Prevention is always better than cure.

In addition to thumb sucking, crooked teeth can result from mouth breathing as well. 

Does Poor Oral Hygiene Leads to Crooked Teeth?

The answer to “Why are teeth crooked?” lies in your oral hygiene. It is not entirely necessary that only bad oral hygiene leads to crooked teeth, but it is one of the potential factors. Improperly brushing, not flossing, or rinsing your mouth with lukewarm salt water occasionally,  can lead to oral diseases. 

Here, the oral diseases refer to:

  • Gingivitis – swelling of gums
  • Periodontitis – swelling and disease in the structures that keep the tooth stable in the bone. 

Gingivitis and periodontitis can affect the normal positioning of the tooth and tilt or crook them. Therefore, visiting a dentist at least twice a year is crucial for timely treatment. 

Is Genetics Linked With Crooked Teeth?

Unfortunately, yes. If you have crooked teeth despite maintaining good oral hygiene and visiting your dentist, look at your parents’ teeth, too. If they are crooked, there is a chance that either you or your siblings may have crooked teeth as well. 

Conditions like an overbite(overlapping of teeth), open bite(inability to meet teeth of both jaws), underbite, etc., can be inherited. 

Does Diet Cause Crooked Teeth?

Yes. If a child’s diet lacks vitamins and necessary minerals like zinc, calcium, magnesium, etc., then it is likely that the teeth can be crooked. The teeth do not get sufficient nutrition to grow in a proper shape and size. 

Does Trauma Cause Crookedness?

Did you fall from your bicycle and tilt your front teeth? Don’t worry. This happens to many children and even adults. Different games and sports, like falling from a horse, boxing, etc., can also cause crooked teeth. It is advised to visit the dentist as soon as this happens and pursue the suggested treatment. In this case, timely treatment can help maintain aesthetics and oral functions.

When Should Crooked Teeth Be Fixed?

Crooked teeth should be fixed when they interfere with regular oral functions. In addition to understanding what causes crooked teeth, it is also essential to know that you can get your teeth fixed if:

  • You can not close your mouth properly
  • There is a high chance that your teeth will break if you fall. 
  • You can not chew properly
  • It hurts when you chew your food
  • Speech has become difficult
  • Your cheeks and jaws hurt upon opening or closing your mouth

These are some genuine reasons why you should get your crooked teeth fixed. 

However, for some patients, crooked teeth only affect their aesthetics. Firstly, yes, you can get your crooked teeth fixed if it affects your self-esteem and if they look out of place.

But always remember that every human being is unique and has his own set of features; therefore, owning them will boost your self-confidence. 

How To Fix Crooked Teeth?

Various options exist to fix and bring crooked teeth back to their normal position. Usually, an orthodontist treats misaligned teeth and restores their natural position. It can be done in the following ways:

Can Braces Fix Crooked Teeth?

Yes, braces can fix crooked teeth. Depending on your crooked teeth and the treatment plan offered by your dentist, there are mainly four types of braces that can be used to fix your crooked teeth:

  • Metallic braces
  • Ceramic braces
  • Lingual braces
  • Invisible braces

Irrespective of the braces you choose, maintaining oral hygiene of braces is extremely important. Moreover, in orthodontic treatment, the patient should avoid missing any appointments because it affects the progress and outcome of the treatment. 

Can Clear Aligners & Retainers Fix Crooked Teeth?

Yes, clear aligners and retainers can be used to fix crooked teeth. Depending upon the extent of crookedness, the dentist opts for either retainer (usually for mild cases), clear aligners (moderate cases), or metal braces, respectively.

Can I Use Veneers For Crooked Teeth?

Yes, if your teeth are mildly crooked, veneers can be used. However, if they interfere with normal functioning, it is better to go for a curative and permanent solution. Veneers cover up crooked teeth and mask the tilted and rotated teeth. 


This article discusses “What causes crooked teeth and how to fix them?” in detail. Crooked teeth are not a medical emergency unless they intervene with oral functions. Teeth contribute significantly to human aesthetics and add a unique look, even if they are slightly crooked. 

If you are searching for a treatment for your crooked teeth or are confused, book an appointment with Arthur Yeh and Associates. We have dental experts in Montclair, NJ, under one roof. Whether you require veneers or other dental treatment, our dentists in Montclair, NJ, do it all!