Changes after 4 Extractions

I had four extractions and braces put on at age 7 or 8 and had them for about three years. I wore my retainers until I was 25 at which point I found out retraction orthodontics are bad functionally. I quit wearing the retainers and tried to get my tongue to the roof of my mouth to improve. About four years later I realized my face and bite had looked much worse and I don’t believe this is all due to age related changes. I decided to go to the orthodontist and get my bite fixed. I have done Invisalign and recently got my retainers. I thought they were going to put my bite back to where it was previously but I noticed it’s a little different and my previous retainers do not fit. I also noticed my face is still not the same as before and it seems like my cheek bones are more pronounced. My face seems longer too. I decided I want my teeth back to where they were with the first set of braces so is this possible? Also what dental relationships are different from the first and second time? The photo is from before.

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Answer: Changes after 4 extractions

By Sarah h
Dental Professional

Unfortunately, it is not possible to make your current dentition fit in your previous retainers from when you were an adolecent.  As we age, our mandible (lower jaw) continues to grown.  As your face matures, the shape changes and your teeth continue to shift. Whether or not you believe your first orthodontist did what was best, your teeth were removed and cannot be replaced easily.  Teeth continually shift forward naturally, however they do not naturally move distally (towards the back of your mouth).  When your teeth move, your bite changes, causing your teeth to try and fit together in a new comfortable position.  You can still be class I molar occlusion, even though your previous retainers do not fit.  Your teeth, jaw bones, facial muscles and overall weight all play a role in our face shape.  This must be taken into consideration when looking at your physical appearance.  Continue to wear your retainers as directed by your orthodontist.  This will prevent movement in the future and keep your teeth in their current position.  If you are unsatisfied with your Invisalign treatment, you can ask your treating dentist if a refinement is possible.  Invisalign includes one refinement with your initial treatment cost, at no additional cost to you.  This will give you additional aligners to make minor corrections to your original treatment goal.  If you choose to do so now, you may however, be responsibe for an additional set of retainers in the future. 

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