Think of Bugs Bunny. Do your teeth resemble his teeth? If so, you may be suffering from an overbite. While having an overbite is quite common, it is best to seek orthodontic treatment, especially when it is severe. Read this blog to learn more about overbite and how you can get it fixed!
What is an Overbite?
An overbite, or buck teeth, refers to a condition where your upper front teeth extend beyond your lower front teeth. This condition is a form of misalignment of the teeth, which falls under the category of malocclusion, encompassing all types of crooked or misaligned teeth.
What Causes an Overbite?
There are a lot of causes for an overbite to occur:
An overbite could be hereditary or genetic. For example, the shape of one’s jaw, which is determined by genetics, can impact the alignment of their teeth.
2. Nail Biting
Nail biting can cause an overbite by putting pressure on the upper front teeth, which can cause them to move forward and become misaligned. Continuously biting the nails can also result in the wearing down of the edges of the front teeth. In addition, nail biting can also lead to changes in the shape of the jawbone.
3. Teeth Grinding
Teeth grinding can cause an overbite by gradually wearing down the enamel and surface of the teeth, making them shorter and flatter. Additionally, constant grinding can also cause the jaw to shift and change shape.
4. Thumb Sucking
Prolonged thumb sucking can also lead to changes in the shape of the palate and jawbone, which can contribute to the development of an overbite.
5. Tongue Thrusting
Tongue thrusting refers to a habit where an individual pushes their tongue against their teeth while swallowing, which can cause an overbite. The repeated pressure from the tongue can push the front teeth out of alignment and lead to changes in the shape of the jawbone.
6. Using a Pacifier
Using a pacifier beyond the age of three can cause an overbite by putting pressure on the developing teeth and jaws. This pressure can cause the front teeth to shift forward, resulting in an overbite.
What are the Symptoms of an Overbite?
The main indication of an overbite is linked to how you look, as it involves the protrusion of the upper front teeth beyond the lower front teeth, resulting in an overlapping appearance. Other symptoms that require dental intervention include:
1. Difficulty in Opening or Closing the Mouth Fully
An overbite can make it difficult to open or close the mouth fully. This can lead to pain, discomfort, and difficulties in performing everyday tasks such as eating, speaking, or yawning.
2. Discomfort while Eating
An overbite can cause discomfort while eating, especially when consuming tough or crunchy foods. This discomfort can be accompanied by pain in the jaws, making it difficult to chew food properly and interfering with the digestive process.
3. Pain in the Jaws
Misaligned jaws can lead to chronic pain in the jaws, which can be exacerbated by everyday activities such as eating, speaking, or even sleeping. This pain can range from mild discomfort to debilitating pain.
4. Challenges in Speaking
An overbite can also affect your ability to speak properly, as the misaligned teeth can make it difficult to form sounds and words correctly. This can lead to speech impediments or difficulties, affecting communication and self-confidence.
How do you Treat an Overbite?
An overbite cannot be treated at home, and dental intervention is required. Here are the possible treatments that your orthodontist may prescribe you:
1. Growth Modification Devices
For children, growth modification devices or palate expanders can be used. This is used during growth spurts so that the jaw can be repositioned.
For mild to severe cases of overbite, braces are the best treatment to correct an overbite. With the help of braces, the teeth will slowly move to their correct alignment.
3. Tooth Removal
Sometimes, there’s not enough space for new teeth to grow. Thus, the removal of other teeth present may be an option recommended by your dentist.
Retainers are used to treat mild cases of overbite, as well as those who have had braces before, to help retain the teeth’s alignment over time.
If none of the above works well for your overbite, your orthodontist might recommend you for surgery to correct jaw alignment.
When to See an Orthodontist
An appointment with an orthodontist is necessary, especially if your overbite affects your daily life. For example, your overbite interferes with your physicality, such as you not being able to speak properly or you experiencing pain while eating, or your psychological welfare, such as not being able to smile confidently because of your overbite. In that case, it’s time to visit an orthodontist near you.
Book an Appointment Now
If you believe that you need to consult with an orthodontist regarding your overbite, consider scheduling an appointment with a reliable orthodontist in Stafford, VA, like Kumra Orthodontics. At Kumra Orthodontics, you are sure that you are receiving care from the leading orthodontic clinic in Stafford. With over 15 years of earned reputation and affordable orthodontic services for all ages, Kumra Orthodontics has been the go-to orthodontic clinic for most people.