Crooked teeth are very common – millions of people have misalignments ranging from minor crowding to significant bite discrepancies.

Sometimes, our patients wonder what caused their crooked teeth – and if there was anything they could have done to prevent it.

Common causes of crooked teeth

The position of your teeth can change throughout your life – and there are many reasons why they can be misaligned.

Here are some of the most common causes of crooked teeth.


Your genetics can influence your smile in many ways, and your genes affect the size and shape of your jaws, the development of your palate, dental crowding and bite problems such as overbites and underbites.

Childhood habits

Habits like thumb and finger sucking can impact the development of your teeth, jaw and palate, altering the position of your teeth and even your bite. Persistent thumb sucking can result in an overjet or open bite.

Cleaning braces with an interdental brush

Missing teeth

If you are missing a tooth or one gets knocked out, your other teeth can drift into the available space, causing gaps and crooked teeth. To prevent this from happening, there are various ways to replace missing teeth, including bridges and implants.

Early loss of baby teeth

Children typically start losing their baby teeth around the age of six. If you lose a baby tooth too soon, it can affect the position of your adult tooth. This can have a knock-on effect on the surrounding teeth and lead to more substantial crowding.


If you have a crown, bridge or implant that doesn’t fit properly, it can change your bite and put pressure on your teeth, causing them to shift. We frequently work with other specialists to move teeth into the optimal position for restorations.

Poor oral hygiene

If you don’t clean your teeth and gums effectively, it can eventually lead to gum disease. Periodontitis is a serious gum infection that causes your teeth to loosen and move or, worst-case scenario, fall out.


Accidental trauma can change the position of your teeth, damage your gums and even result in missing teeth. If your teeth protrude, you may be more at risk of damage. Always wear a protective mouth guard for contact sports, and never use your teeth as tools.


As we age, our jawbone loses density, allowing our teeth to drift forward and crowd together. If you have orthodontic treatment early on, your retainers will help to prevent this outcome.

Solutions to crooked teeth

Whatever the cause of your crooked smile, we can straighten your teeth and keep your smile looking incredible for years to come using the latest orthodontic techniques.

Choose from fixed braces with clear or metal brackets or even crystal-clear aligners. Invisalign aligners are almost invisible, and you can take them out to eat and drink.

Our specialist orthodontist Dr. Jackie Bracken is an expert at straightening teeth and an Invisalign Diamond Apex provider.

During your first consultation, she’ll go through all your options so you can feel confident that you’ve made an informed decision.

Your treatment will include retainers and aftercare to help you maintain your new smile for life.

Get in touch to ask us any questions and arrange your no-obligation consultation.