You may find that in order to fulfill your treatment plan and get the results you pay for when you pay for an orthodontic appliance, you may need to have some of your teeth extracted. This does not sound too bad, especially when it is just one tooth that needs to be pulled, but when several, up to four or five teeth need to be removed, the orthodontic option may not seem all that important after all. I intend, with this article, to convince you to get the orthodontic treatment even if it seems like it is simply not worth it at all, and if you are scared by the prospect of having some of your teeth pulled.
When you are an adult, your jaw has stopped growing. If your teeth are still crooked or not aligned well, that probably means they are going to stay in their current state. Since there will be no more growth, the teeth will stay in the way they are, or may become more crowded if they are pressing on each other. A minimal amount of growth can be forced with the use of a palatal expander, but that is about all that your old bones will stretch. Teeth are anchored in soft tissues, and can move about significantly. The only way to make room in the case of crowding is to extract teeth. Once the teeth are pulled, an orthodontic appliance like a brace is placed on the teeth, and in this way the teeth can move around in the softer periodontal tissues and be aligned.
The case is a little bit more complicated with children. Nowadays, most orthodontists will tell you that extracting the teeth of children is unnecessary and excessive. But a decade or so ago, it was still fairly common practice. The truth is, the faces and maxillofacial features of children can be changed easily enough while they are still young. The use of headgear or palatal expanders can help in this, and then usually no extraction is necessary. The question is, is it more worth putting your child in headgear, which will extremely limit the ability of the child to do certain activities, particularly sports, which are also very important for developing bodies, or is it better to just extract the tooth in question and align the teeth accordingly? This is a choice that depends on the severity and length of the treatment time, the wishes and habits of your child as well as the financial situation of your family.