Why Do Teeth Shift? What Can You Do to Stop Them?

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teeth shifting

Table of contents

  1. Common Reasons Teeth Shift
    1. Wisdom Teeth
    2. Age
    3. Tooth Loss & Wear
    4. Bad Oral Hygiene & Gum Disease
  2. How To Prevent Teeth Shifting
    1. Retainers
    2. Mouth Guards
    3. Clear Aligners
    4. Good Oral Hygiene
  3. Get Your Clear Aligners to Prevent Teeth Shifting
62% of Canadians believe that a healthy smile is an important health factor. However, having a good smile can impact our self-esteem as well. Whether our smiles are discolored or crooked, it can result in lower confidence. While braces used to be the only option to repair our crooked teeth, there are new options that work for teeth straightening at home. Do you want to learn more about clear aligners and how they can help prevent teeth shifting after braces? Keep reading this article to see why teeth shift and how we can stop them from moving.

Common Reasons Teeth Shift

Our teeth will naturally shift over our lifetime. However, there are some things we do that may speed up or worsen the shifting. By identifying these common reasons for teeth shifting, we can prevent them and have straighter smiles.

Wisdom Teeth

Wisdom teeth begin growing in our mouths between the ages of 17 and 25. However, these are often impacted and will begin to crowd your mouth. If your wisdom teeth do not have enough space to grow into your mouth, they will begin to push on your other teeth. This is why it is so important to get our wisdom teeth removed if they are impacted!


As we get older, our gums begin to recede and our jawbones begin to weaken. Because our gums and jawbones are one of the things that hold our teeth in place, aging is another common cause of shifting teeth. Our jaws can also become more narrow as we get older. When this happens, there is less space in our mouths and our teeth may begin to crowd. As our teeth become more crowded, we may find that our bite shifts as well. While the changes may be slight and unnoticeable at first, they will eventually cause more problems with our oral health. While we may not be able to completely prevent our teeth from shifting due to age, we can do our best to improve our oral health habits and wear clear aligners to limit the shifting teeth.

Tooth Loss & Wear

Damage to our teeth is another common cause of shifting teeth. First, when we lose a tooth and do not get a dental implant to replace it, there will be a gap in our mouths. Our teeth naturally begin to shift to fill in this new space. Even if we have all of our teeth, grinding or other wear on our teeth can lead to shifting teeth. Teeth grinding, also known as bruxism, is a common condition, especially in children, teenagers, and young adults. The extra stress and pressure on our teeth that comes from grinding can lead to movement in our teeth.

Bad Oral Hygiene & Gum Disease

When we have poor oral hygiene, we increase the number of bacteria in our mouths. This bacteria can lead to receding gums and damaged tissue in our mouths. Eventually, this bacteria will create pockets in our mouths and will continually weaken our gums. This makes it easier for teeth to shift.

How To Prevent Teeth Shifting

Because your teeth naturally shift, you may not be able to prevent your teeth from shifting completely. However, there are some ways that you can reduce the shifting from unnatural causes. If you have noticed significant shifting in your mouth, here are a few ways that you can keep your teeth straight.


After getting braces in the past, it is vital that we continually wear our retainers. Otherwise, our teeth will begin shifting back to their previous state. These retainers are created to fit our mouths exactly and typically only need to be worn for a few hours or at night. Permanent retainers are another great solution for those who have gotten braces in the past.

Mouth Guards

When we have problems grinding our teeth at night, there is not much we can do to prevent this. However, one way to address teeth grinding is to get mouth guards to wear while we sleep. This will keep our teeth from wearing down and shifting.

Clear Aligners

One of the best solutions to keep our teeth from shifting or to improve teeth that have already shifted is to use clear aligners. These aligners help keep your teeth in place and offer great results. Even after our teeth have already shifted, we can straighten them with clear aligners and improve the appearance of our smile.

Good Oral Hygiene

Finally, we need to practice good oral hygiene to keep our teeth from shifting. By practicing good oral hygiene, we will lower our risk of developing periodontal disease and we will prevent too much bacteria from building up in our mouths. It is best to brush our teeth twice a day, floss every single day, and get regular dental checkups.

Get Your Clear Aligners to Prevent Teeth Shifting

If our teeth have begun shifting after braces or even if we just want straighter teeth, clear aligners may be the best solution. Whether we have teeth shifting from our wisdom teeth, gaps in our teeth, or even aging, we can get straight teeth with clear aligners! Rather than visiting a dentist or orthodontist to get braces, we can get invisible aligners delivered straight to our homes with Aligner Co to begin straightening teeth. Contact our team today to learn more about our teeth straightening process. Or, we can see if we will be good candidates for clear braces teeth straightening by getting a free assessment.
Canadians admit to poor oral hygiene habits despite citing a healthy-lookingsmile as a health priority. (2019, January 29). News Wire Canada. https://www.newswire.ca/news-releases/canadians-admit-to-poor-oral-hygiene-habits-despite-citing-a-healthy-lookingsmile-as-a-health-priority-539575932.html Impacted wisdom teeth - Symptoms and causes. (2018, March 10). Mayo Clinic. https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/wisdom-teeth/symptoms-causes/syc-20373808#:%7E:text=Wisdom%20teeth%20usually%20emerge%20sometime,third%20molars%20to%20develop%20normally. Sesame Communications. (n.d.). Is Jawbone Loss Normal As We Age? Retrieved September 24, 2021, from https://www.sesamecommunications.com/ppnarticles/jawbone-loss-normal-age/ Suni, E. (2021, September 23). Bruxism: Teeth Grinding at Night. Sleep Foundation. https://www.sleepfoundation.org/bruxism

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