What Is an Overbite and How Can Orthodontists Help You?

Overbites (or overjets) are common in orthodontics, affecting around 60% of patients in the United States. Despite the fact that the upper incisors should normally be in front of the lower ones, most people dislike their front teeth protruding excessively. What causes an overbite, and how may orthodontists help you achieve a better smile?

An overbite is caused when the upper teeth bite over the lower teeth, or when the upper jaw is too far forward in relation to the lower jaw. This can be due to genetics, bad habits such as thumb sucking, or misshapen teeth. Overbites can also be caused by an imbalance in your facial structure, which can be corrected with orthodontic treatment.

Orthodontic treatment is usually sufficient to correct dental overbites. Depending on the amount of crowding or protrusion, correction might or may not need the extraction of teeth. Even if the jaw size is equal to that of the teeth, if they are smaller than the tooth size, something must give. The consequence may be protrusive or excessively crowded teeth, or an overjet.

In some cases, surgery may be the best option to correct an overbite. This is usually only recommended in severe cases where the overbite is due to a misalignment of the jaws, and other treatment options have been unsuccessful. Surgery can be used to move the upper jaw into its correct position, or to shorten the lower jaw.

Rubber Bands and Springs Can be Used to Reduce Overbites by Up to 90%

Many people with overbites find that orthodontic treatment alone is not enough to correct the problem. To help reduce excessive overbite more quickly, many orthodontists use rubber bands or springs to gently “pull” the lower jaw forward, helping to close the gap and align your teeth. These small but effective tools are usually only used for a short period of time (usually around 6-8 weeks), and can help reduce your overbite by up to 90%.

If you’re concerned about your overbite, or that of your child, consult with an orthodontist to discuss treatment options. They will be able to assess whether surgery is necessary, and develop a treatment plan to help you achieve a straighter, more attractive smile.

The best way to prevent or correct an overbite is through regular dental checkups and with the help of an orthodontist. By working closely with your dentist, you can ensure that any issues are caught early on and treated appropriately. And by practicing good dental hygiene habits such as brushing and flossing regularly, and avoiding bad habits such as thumb sucking, you can help maintain a healthy, aligned smile. So don’t let your overbite hold you back from showing off your beautiful smile – take steps today to correct it and enjoy all the benefits of a straight, healthy set of teeth!‚Äč