To answer this question, it's important that you first establish what you define "bad teeth" to be. For some people, having crooked, yellow, large, or small teeth is displeasing. Another (and perhaps more important) consideration is the state of health of your teeth. "Bad" teeth could mean an oral environment prone to cavities. Whatever displeases you about your smile, how much of it can you really blame on your genes?
The Teeth You're Given
Genetics do play a role in the appearance, shape, size, and position of your natural teeth. Jaw size also affects the way your teeth fit together. Teeth that grow tightly together, even overlapping, may always be more prone to developing cavities between them. However, simply because they are what they are does not make you powerless.
Science has not definitively proven whether there are measurable genetic variations in the strength of a tooth's protective enamel. The condition of your teeth is greatly affected by your choices in diet and oral hygiene. A diet high in acidic sugar will weaken the enamel. Aggressive tooth brushing can also wear it away. Enamel depends upon a supply of fluoride and other minerals to keep it strong, but if you've experienced a deficiency in any of those minerals in the past, that could also contribute to cavity-prone enamel.
The Biggest Influence
No matter what your teeth look like, the biggest factor that affects the health of your teeth is you! That's right, the choices you make now have the greatest impact on whether you have 'good' or 'bad' teeth. Proper oral hygiene, fluoride use, wise diet choices, and regular dental visits can help you enjoy great teeth.
Schedule a consultation with the Dental Partners of Brookline to find out how you can have the best teeth of your life.