Are you suffering from an overbite? Learn what it is, the causes, and discover effective cures that work. Get insights into this common dental issue today!
Everyone loves a flawless smile. Sparkling white teeth in perfect alignment with each other can make anyone look beautiful. However, not everyone is blessed with a picture-perfect smile. Sometimes teeth alignment issues can affect the brilliance of your smile. There are many types of tooth alignment problems, also known as malocclusions, some of which become evident in childhood.
When the teeth or the jaws are misaligned with each other, it can affect the overall look of your smile. Thankfully, orthodontists have devised pain-free treatments to help you correct your smile and improve your appearance. One of the most common forms of malocclusion is an overbite or deep bite. In this article, you will find all you need to know about overbites, the causes of overbites, and the treatment recommended by experts.
What is Overbite?
An overbite is defined as a condition where the upper front teeth are protruding beyond your lower front teeth. A common name for this condition is buckteeth. If ignored, buckteeth can cause tooth decay, gum diseases, and jaw pain. Thankfully, such misalignment can be corrected with orthodontic treatment. Depending on the extent and nature of the overbite, your dentist will help you understand how to treat an overbite.
What Causes an Overbite?
It is difficult to pinpoint the exact cause of an overbite. Many factors can contribute to the development of overbites. Some of them are listed below –
- Genetics – The shape of your teeth or jaws based on your genetics, maybe the cause of an overbite. If your lower jaw is shorter than the upper, it may create an overlap.
- Misaligned Teeth – Overcrowded or misaligned teeth may create pressure on your front teeth, causing them to protrude and create an overbite.
- Oral Habits – Habits in childhood, such as thumb-sucking or using a pacifier for a long time may increase the chance of an overbite.
- Teeth Grinding – If you have a habit of subconsciously grinding your teeth or clenching your jaws, it deepens your bite and causes misalignment.
- Aging – As we age, our bite deepens naturally. A mild overbite may worsen with age.
Can an Overbite Cause Health Problems?
A mild overbite will not cause any health problems. But if you have a severe overbite, and it is ignored for a long – it may begin to affect your overall health adversely. Here are some health issues caused by overbite –
- Tooth decay and cavities from difficulties in brushing
- Pain in the jaw
- Difficulty in chewing
- Trouble in speaking or difficulty with pronunciation
- Sleep apnea
- Changes to appearance, such as a smaller chin
How to Fix an Overbite?
There are many treatments for fixing an overbite. Depending on the severity, the doctor will suggest the best treatment for your overbite. They may need to take an x-ray and conduct an examination before they can suggest the most suitable treatment for you. The effectiveness and duration of the treatment also differ for each person.
- Braces For an Overbite – Metallic braces are used to correct tooth alignment in many cases. They are also used to correct overbite teeth or deep bite teeth. Braces use metal brackets that realign the teeth over six to eighteen months. It is a time-taking process, and people who wear overbite braces may find it difficult to brush or floss their teeth properly. At times, braces may cause jaw pain and headaches. But these can be treated with over-the-counter pain medicines.
- Invisalign – Invisalign is an acclaimed treatment for tooth alignment. Invisalign for overbite is an effective and comfortable treatment. Instead of metal brackets, Invisalign uses clear trays to change the position of your teeth. As time passes, the patient moves to different trays, each pushing the teeth into alignment. The good part is, Invisalign is removable and patients can take it off to brush or floss properly.
- Surgery – In some cases, your doctor may suggest surgery to correct your overbite. If the overbite is caused by the misalignment of the jawbone, then surgery can help correct it. Usually, surgery is suggested only in cases of adults. In children, the jaw bone is still developing and can be corrected using braces or Invisalign.
- Removing Teeth – Sometimes, if the overbite is caused by overcrowding of teeth – the solution is to remove one or more teeth. Doing so will give more room to the remaining teeth to naturally align themselves and correct the overbite.
In children and adults alike, an overbite can be a cause of low confidence, poor health, or dental issues. It is best to correct an overbite as soon as you can, to avoid health problems and dental complications later. Talk to your dentist about the best way to correct your teeth’s misalignment issues.