WHETHER WE GET braces as teenagers or not, whether we grow up with straight teeth or not, our teeth can still shift as we get older. 🤔 This happens for a number of reasons.
Bottom teeth in particular are prone to gradual shifting called mesial drift, meaning that they tend to shift forward over time. They do this for several reasons. Support structures like gums, bone, ligaments, and muscles grow weaker with age. Daily habits also contribute, such as nail-biting, stomach-sleeping, and resting our faces on our hands.
Erosion also causes shifting. After years of scraping against each other, teeth wear down to some degree, which opens up more space for that forward movement. People who have a teeth grinding habit are particularly susceptible to mesial drift. 😬
How can we reduce and reverse drifting over time? There are a few ways. We can cut back on habits that contribute to shifting and maintain great oral hygiene habits to keep any shifting to a minimum, and we can get orthodontic treatment as adults to reverse shifting that still happens! 😃