Your teeth affect your whole body. When they’re healthy, you’re healthier too. A missing tooth can affect your bite, speech and eating choices. As you rely more on your remaining teeth, you increase the chance they will wear out prematurely, or be damaged or lost. Who would want their appearance and health to deteriorate? That’s the natural consequence of missing teeth – the jaw literally melts away. Generally, people will lose 25% of their supporting jawbone structure within the first year after tooth loss.
Third molars are commonly referred to as wisdom teeth. They are usually the last teeth to develop and are located in the back of your mouth, behind your second molars. Their development is usually completed between the middle teenage years and early twenties, a time traditionally associated with the onset of maturity and the attainment of wisdom. Although most people develop and grow 32 permanent adult teeth, many times their jaws are too small to accommodate the four wisdom teeth. When inadequate space prevents the teeth from erupting they are called impacted.
Orthognathic surgery is needed when the top and bottom jaws don't meet correctly and/or teeth don't adequately fit within the jaw. Teeth are straightened with orthodontics, and corrective jaw surgery repositions a misaligned jaw. This not only improves facial appearance, but also ensures that teeth meet correctly and function properly. People who can benefit from orthognathic surgery include those with an improper bite, or jaws that are positioned incorrectly. Jaw growth is a gradual process and in some instances, the upper and lower jaws may grow at different rates.
Dr. Armando Aguilera, Jr. is a native of Miami, FL. At the age of seventeen he pursued his dream of serving his country and enlisted into the US Army as a combat medic and dental technician. While serving with the 25th Infantry Division he attended college in the evenings and was awarded an ROTC Scholarship to complete his pre-doctoral education. He attended the University of Miami earning a Bachelor Degree with honors and graduating first in his class as Distinguished Military Graduate.