Crooked Teeth and Misaligned Bites: Causes and Treatments

Crooked Teeth and Misaligned Bites

Our smile is a significant part of our personality and plays a major part in moulding our confidence. Having crooked, twisted, crowded or overlapping teeth can affect your confidence immensely. Crooked teeth are quite common among all age groups, from children to adults, and several reasons contribute to this misalignment.

Below we’ll discuss the causes of crooked teeth, the problems caused by them, and effective treatment for crooked/crowded teeth and misaligned bites.

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A] Causes of Crooked Teeth and Misaligned Bites

Several reasons contribute to misaligned teeth. Below we have listed some of the major causes of crooked, overlapping, or overcrowded teeth.

1. Thumb Sucking: Thumb sucking can lead to crooked or misaligned teeth in children. The pressure applied by the thumb on the still-growing gums can cause the teeth to grow crooked, especially outwards. This problem can cause issues if the habit of thumb sucking continues during pre-schooling years and beyond.

2. Tongue Thrusting: Tongue thrusting is a poor myofunctional activity that has the same impact on the teeth as thumb sucking. It can result in misaligned bites, especially an overbite where the upper teeth protrude.

3. Genetics and Heredity: Children often get crooked or uneven teeth if one of the parents have them. An overbite or underbite can also be hereditary.

4. Poor Dental Care: Cavities and gum diseases can lead to crooked teeth and other oral health problems. Proper brushing and flossing of teeth regularly are necessary to avoid cavities. Also, visit the dentist every six months to prevent oral health issues.

5. Lack of Nourishment: Your teeth require as much nutrition as your body. Poor nutrition, especially in growing children, can lead to tooth decay and poor overall dental development, which are potential precursors to crooked or twisted teeth.

6. Misaligned Teeth: Misaligned teeth, also called malocclusion, are caused when the size of the upper and lower jaw is smaller than usual, resulting in overbite or underbite. In the case of an overbite, the upper set of teeth protrudes over the lower teeth. Whereas in underbite, the lower set of teeth protrudes over the upper ones, resulting in speech problems, chewing difficulty, among others.

7. Facial Injury: Facial trauma such as a jaw injury in childhood can result in displaced or twisted teeth or a misaligned bite. The reason is the slight shifting of the jaw from its original position due to the impact of the injury, resulting in crooked teeth. Besides misalignment, facial injuries may also result in tooth loss, and when there is an open space in the jaw, the rest of the teeth tend to shift and crowd to cover that space.

B] Problems Caused By Crooked Teeth & Misaligned Bites

1. Low Self Esteem: As mentioned above, your smile reflects your personality. Hence, people having crooked or misaligned teeth tend to have low self-esteem. Moreover, poor dental health can result in cavities and stained teeth. It may make you conscious of how you look, making it difficult to talk, smile, or laugh with ease.

2. Wear & tear of teeth, gums, and jaw muscles: Misaligned teeth are more prone to wear and tear than usual. The wear and tear do not only occur for the teeth but also the gums and jaw muscles. In many cases, excessive wear and tear can lead to TMJ (temporomandibular jaw) disorder wherein the patients experience severe pain or even lockjaw. The disorder can also affect the muscles and ligaments surrounding the jaw joint.

3. Gum Disease: Over time, poor oral or dental health may result in bad breath, cavity, plaque, or tooth decay, eventually causing gum disease. Gingivitis is the initial stage of gum disease, wherein the gums feel itchy, irritated, and swollen, causing discomfort. Bleeding gums is another prominent symptom that indicates the onset of gum disease. If gingivitis is left untreated, it leads to periodontitis. Here, periodic periodontal exams can help maintain your oral health.

4. Speech Difficulty: Difficulty in speech, such as slurring or problem in pronouncing a few words is the most common effect seen in people having crooked or wonky teeth.

5. Improper Chewing: Chewing becomes a problem for many with crooked teeth due to a misaligned jaw. The upper or lower jaw may protrude, causing them to rub together, making chewing difficult.

6. Weak Digestion: Crooked teeth prevents you from chewing food properly. If you can’t chew food properly, you would likely experience digestion issues. Apart from weak digestion, the nutritional intake also suffers, resulting in poor health.

C] Treatments for Crooked Teeth and Misaligned Bites

If you are unhappy with your teeth and looking for solutions, then here are some treatment options.

1. Braces: Braces are orthodontic devices consisting of brackets, bands, and wires. Braces on crooked teeth are used to apply constant pressure on the jaw over an extended period, making it adapt to pressure in a certain direction which causes them to move into the desired position to align the teeth.

There are four types of braces available. Based on the oral examination, the dentist or orthodontist will suggest the right solution for enhanced teeth alignment.

  • Metal Braces: Fixed metal braces are attached to the teeth with brackets, bands, and flexible wires. It is an ideal choice for those with complex dental alignment issues.
  • Ceramic Braces: Ceramic braces (and archwires) that connect them are either clear or tooth-coloured. Hence, they do not stand out as much as metal braces. The process of aligning teeth is the same as metal brackets.
  • Invisible Braces (Invisalign): Invisible braces, also known as Invisalign, are nearly invisible brackets. These custom-made, clear plastic aligners fit over each tooth like a mouthguard. They can be removed and replaced twice monthly. These, however, are not ideal for severe tooth alignment corrections.
  • Lingual Braces: The side of your teeth that faces your tongue is called the lingual surface. Lingual braces are another type of invisible bracket. They are similar to traditional metal braces, except they are attached to the backside of your teeth instead of the front.

2. Orthognathic Surgery: Surgical procedures are another option to straighten teeth for a quick result (compared to braces). The orthodontist may recommend a more involved procedure designed to realign your jaw called Orthognathic Surgery. This surgery is only recommended if the misaligned teeth severely affect your chewing ability or speech. The cost of the procedure is determined by the type of surgery you have.

FAQs - Frequently Asked Questions

What causes crooked teeth?

Thumb sucking, poor dental care, and the impact of facial injury are some reasons for crooked teeth. Tooth loss is another common reason for crooked teeth in adults, where the remaining teeth shift into the space created by the missing tooth.

If my teeth were straight as a child, can they still become crooked?

Both baby teeth and permanent teeth can grow crooked or become crooked. If one or more baby teeth fall out sooner due to trauma to the mouth or tooth decay, the permanent teeth that follow may grow slanted or crooked rather than straight.

Are clear braces effective for treating crooked teeth?

Clear braces can fix mild to moderate levels of overbites, underbites, crossbites, open bites, crowded teeth, gaps between teeth, and general crookedness.

How do I know if my teeth are crooked or my bite is misaligned?

Factors like the abnormal alignment of teeth, abnormal face appearance, difficulty in chewing or biting, and speech difficulties, including a lisp, are some of the signs the dentist will look for to determine if your teeth are crooked or you have misaligned bites.

Do I need braces to straighten my crooked teeth?

For most people, braces are the safest & effective way to straighten teeth permanently. But if you have mild or slightly crooked teeth, an orthodontist-prescribed retainer may also be enough.

Can crooked teeth harm my health if not treated?

If not treated at the right time, crooked teeth can cause health problems. Gingivitis can lead to periodontal disease. It can also cause obstructive sleep apnea - an airway problem.

How can fixed braces correct crooked teeth?

Braces move your teeth to the desired position by exerting pressure on them continuously for extended periods to correct crooked teeth.

If you are looking for an affordable dentist at Sunshine Coast, get in touch with us.

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Dr. Adarsh Pisharodi

Dr. Adarsh Pisharodi, serving as the principal dentist at Oris Dental, brings a wealth of expertise spanning over 26 years to his esteemed practice. Specializing in cosmetic dentistry, dental implants, and orthodontics, he takes immense pride in rejuvenating countless smiles and instilling confidence in Sunshine Coast residents. As an esteemed member of the Australian Dental Association and esteemed dental societies, he remains steadfast in delivering exceptional care to his patients.

Adarsh (Principal Dentist)


Adarsh (A-Dash) is the principal dentist at Oris Dental. Adarsh graduated as a dentist in 1996 from the University of Mumbai (Bombay, India). He entered private practice as an assistant dentist in one of the leading practices in Mumbai from 1996-2002. The practice offered all aspects of dentistry with the exception of Orthodontics. This prompted Adarsh to pursue a post graduate degree in Orthodontics and successfully completed the 3 year Full time the master’s program from University of Mumbai (Bombay, India) in 2005. Since then, Adarsh has been in private practice both as a general dentist and an orthodontist. He also served as teaching faculty at University in Mumbai for 3 yrs and when in India, he has been ‘the dentist’ to many dentists!! In 2008, Adarsh took the Australian Dental Council exam for direct recognition of his skill in Australia. He successfully completed the exams in the first attempt and moved to Australia early 2009. He has been in private practice in Australia since Jan 2009. Oris Dental was set up in Minyama in 2011. Oris Dental is now over 8 years old and is growing to be a well-respected practice in the area. He is particularly interested in Cosmetic dentistry Dental implants and Orthodontics. Adarsh hopes to use all the experience he has gained in the past 22 years, to offer the best in dentistry to all his patients in this practice. Adarsh believes in spreading smiles and has successfully designed smiles and in doing so improved the lives and self-confidence of many Sunshine Coast locals (Take a look at our Smile gallery!). Adarsh is an active member of the Australian Dental Association since 2009 He held the post of Senior Lecturer in Orthodontics in Mumbai University before moving to Australia. He is a Life member of the Indian Dental Association, serving as the General Secretary of the Association (Mumbai City Chapter) 2007-2009 He is Life member of the Indian Orthodontic Society. He is Candidate for Membership Examination MRACDS (Ortho) and plans to complete his membership exams soon. Adarsh is also currently pursuing his Diploma in Implant dentistry at the Royal College of Surgeons(Edinburgh). Adarsh has recently complete intensive training in implant placement and restoration in Neoss and TRI (Swiss) Implant system. He is married to Prachi for 15yrs and they have a 11 yr old son – Aarjav, a little daughter Aria who has just started prep and Daisy the mad Lab pup! He is currently learning to play Tennis and Badminton and loves watching the cricket!

Prachi (Owner/ Dentist)


Prachi is the director, part time dentist at Oris Dental. Prachi graduated in 2002 from Nair hospital dental college, Mumbai (Bombay, India), one of the leading dental schools in Asia. She then worked in multiple private practices across Mumbai (Bombay, India). While working as a dentist in various practices she picked up the positives from them and implemented them into this practice at Oris Dental. She is very friendly by nature and is particularly good at handling children, preventive dentistry and hygiene. Prachi moved to Australia in 2009. Prachi has there on completed her Australian Dental council exams successfully in early 2011 and is now ready to bring in her 12 years of experience to Oris Dental. Prachi also serves as a part time dentist at the Oral Health Services Sunshine Coast in Caloundra Kawana and Nambour as needed.

Davina (Dentist)


Davina has been a part of our family since 2014. After completing her bachelor’s degree from the University of Queensland, Davina has been in private practice in an around the Sunshine coast for a year before joining us full time. Davina shows exemplary skills in building a great relationship and rapport with her patients and is well regarded by her peers. Davina is very highly regarded by her current patients. Davina currently works 3 days a week.

Lise Slack (Dental Hygienist)

Lise Stack

Our dental hygienist Lise Slack is a trained member of the dental team who works together with your dentist in preventing gum diseases and dental decay.

Lise joined OrisDental in 2015 and has worked extensively in private specialist practices. She graduated from the University of Stellenbosch in South Africa in 1982 and has had specific training and exposure to an extensive range of periodontal conditions and treatment modalities.

Lise’s dad was a professor in dentistry and this is where her love of teeth comes from. She has invented two specialist oral care products which are available in Australia and several international countries. Lise has also lectured at international dental conferences on the maintenance of dental implants and how to help patients care for their teeth once they have contracted periodontitis.

Both adults and children can benefit from having an appointment with a dental hygienist as they are taught how dental diseases occur and how it can be prevented or managed.

Lise is married to Sam and they have two daughters. They value their family time and love adventurous outdoor sports.

Jesse (Dental Assistant)

Jesse (Dental Assistant)

Jess has been a part of Oris Dental from the outset in 2011. Always cheerful and welcoming Jess is the star amongst our patients at our practice. If you cannot find Jess in the practice she will be at the beach!


Kaela (Receptionist)

Debra (Receptionist)

Kaela arrived at our practice in early 2021. Coming from eight years of retail experience in Northern NSW, she loves working with people and assisting in any way she can. Kaela has also just finished her training as a dental assistant. You will immediately fall in love with her happy, bubbly personality.

Abby (Sr. Dental Assistant)

Abby (Dental Assistant)

Abby is originally from Hervey Bay, but she has been calling the Sunshine Coast home with her husband and two kids for the past four and a half years. Abby completed her cert III in dental assisting in 2015 and is looking to further her studies In the near future. Abby enjoys camping, playing guitar, and travelling
the world with her family.

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    Dr. Param Dass

    Dr. Param Dass

    Param Dass graduated with a Bachelor in Dentistry from the University of Otago, NZ in 2005. He went on to complete his Bachelor in Medicine from the University of Auckland NZ in 2010.

    Param started working part time in our practice since 2015 with special interest in surgical procedures including Dental implants and bone grafting procedures, Surgical extractions including Wisdom teeth and other minor surgical procedures.

    Param is well known for being gentle and caring in treating patients with dental anxiety and maintains a calm demeanour.

    He is also well trained in working with patients with various levels of anxiety, offering dental treatment under Happy Gas, Twilight sedation or under Full general anaesthetic.

    Dr. Brayden Fracchia

    Dr. Brayden Fracchia

    Brayden hails from North Queensland, having completed his Bachelor of Dental Surgery at JCU Cairns, practicing in Hobart and outreach dentistry from Mount Isa over the course of his studies. He has worked with us since 2020. Brayden enjoys becoming a part of a community and enjoys the outdoors and sport in his spare
    time. Having only recently moved to the beautiful Sunshine Coast, Brayden is enthusiastic and well versed in all aspects of basic general dentistry and looks forward to bringing North Queensland hospitality to the South East.



    Briar stated off as a trainee dental assistant in our practice mid-2020. She is the youngest member of our practice and is rapidly becoming an integral part of team Oris. Briar completed her Certificate 3 in our practice in 2021 and works full time Dental assistant at Oris Dental.



    Drew is Oris Dental’ newest member, who has only recently moved from his hometown of Rockhampton. He is our Oral Health Therapist, who specializes in oral health education, general check-ups, fillings and more!
    He loves a good chat and a laugh at work. He prioritizes patient’s comfort and likes to encourage an environment where everyone feels a sense of security and safety in the dental setting. When Drew isn’t at work you’ll find him having a refreshing swim at the beach or having his usual dirty chai at his local cafe.



    Jasmine joined our practice in November 2021 and works with our Oral Health Therapist Drew. Jasmine is new to dental assistance, however is quickly taking on any and all challenges that come her way! She loves animals, and spending quality time with her husband and two kids. Welcome to the team!



    Brooke is originally from Brisbane but has been living on the coast since 2017. She brings over 15 years of experience in the dental industry and has had the opportunity to work in London and Melbourne for the Royal Flying Doctors. Brooke enjoys surfing, scuba diving and exploring the many things that the Sunny Coast has to offer.

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