Home Health How to Fix an Overbite – All You Need to Know

How to Fix an Overbite – All You Need to Know

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Are you dealing with an overbite and wondering about the best ways to correct it? An overbite, where the upper teeth are protruding beyond the lower teeth, can affect both your smile and oral health.

In this article, we will show you various treatments available to fix an overbite, helping you to achieve a healthier, more aligned smile.

What is An Overbite?

An overbite is a common dental condition where the upper teeth overlap the lower teeth more than normal when the jaw is closed.

This alignment issue is not merely aesthetic; it can affect oral functionality and may lead to various dental health problems if left uncorrected.

Overbites are classified into two types: vertical, where the top teeth significantly overlap the bottom, and horizontal, where the top teeth jut out over the bottom teeth. Understanding the nature of your overbite is the first step toward effective treatment.

What’s Usually the Cause of Overbite?

Overbites are typically the result of genetic factors where the structure of the jaw or teeth alignment is inherited, affecting how the upper and lower teeth come together.

However, certain habits during childhood, such as prolonged thumb sucking, excessive pacifier use, or extensive bottle feeding, can exacerbate or contribute to the development of an overbite by pushing the teeth outward and reshaping the jaw.

Dr. Andrew Healy, an experienced Invisalign in Liverpool, notes that while genetic predisposition plays a major role, environmental factors and childhood habits should not be overlooked in assessing the causes of an overbite.

He emphasises the importance of early dental assessments to identify potential issues and implement preventative strategies to minimise the severity of overbites before they require more complex treatments.

Why Fix An Overbite?

Fixing an overbite is important not only for cosmetic reasons but also for functional and health benefits. An overbite can lead to excessive wear on the lower teeth, increased risk of tooth damage and decay, difficulties in chewing and speaking, and can cause jaw pain and temporomandibular joint disorders (TMJ).

Correcting an overbite can prevent these potential complications, improve the ability to maintain proper oral hygiene, and enhance the overall facial profile.

Apart from that, addressing an overbite can also significantly boost self-confidence by creating a more balanced and appealing smile, thereby improving psychological well-being.

So, if you notice you have an overbite, it’s important you talk to your dentist on how to fix the issue. In the latter section of this post, we will also show you some treatment options available to you to correct your overbite. Just keep reading.

Can You Naturally Fix It?

Naturally correcting an overbite without orthodontic intervention is highly unlikely, especially once the jaw has finished growing in adulthood.

While minor dental shifts can occur naturally over time, significant overbite correction typically requires professional treatment using braces or clear aligners.

For children, intervention with orthodontic appliances while the jaw is still developing can guide the teeth and jaw into better alignment, potentially minimising the need for more invasive treatments later in life.

However, for adults, achieving substantial changes in bite alignment naturally is not feasible, and seeking advice from a qualified orthodontist is recommended. Now, let’s consider some ways you can fix an overbite.

How to Fix an Overbite

#1: Clear Aligners

Clear aligners like Invisalign are popular for their aesthetic appeal as they are nearly invisible and can be removed for eating and cleaning. They are effective for mild to moderate overbites and involve wearing a series of custom-made aligners that gradually shift the teeth into the desired position.

If you would prefer to have your overbite fixed more discreetly, then you can consider going for Invisalign. It has major perks in this area.

#2: Metal Braces

Traditional metal braces are often the most effective option for correcting more severe overbites. They provide orthodontists with a high level of control over tooth movement, allowing for precise adjustments that affect not only the alignment of the teeth but also the positioning of the jaw.

#3: Bite Plates

Bite plates are orthodontic appliances usually used in younger patients whose jaws are still growing. These devices help to correct overbites by controlling vertical growth in the upper jaw and allowing the lower jaw to catch up for a more proper alignment.

You can speak with your dentist about this to know if it is a good option for your specific case.

#4: Surgery

In cases of severe overbites where the teeth and jaw are significantly misaligned, orthognathic surgery may be necessary.

This surgical intervention realigns the jawbones and provides a solution that cannot be achieved with orthodontics alone. Surgery is typically reserved for adults with skeletal discrepancies contributing to the overbite, as their jaws have already stopped growing.

How Long Does It Take to Correct an Overbite?

Well, this usually varies significantly based on the severity of the condition and the treatment method employed.

For mild overbites, clear aligners may take anywhere from 6 months to 18 months, while more severe cases using metal braces can require 18 months to 3 years of continuous wear. Orthognathic surgery could offer quicker structural corrections but also involves additional recovery time.

What’s the Best Treatment for an Overbite?

The best treatment for correcting an overbite depends on various factors, including the severity of the overbite, the age of the patient, and their specific dental needs.

Clear aligners and metal braces are excellent options for most individuals, effectively addressing both mild and severe overbites.

For children and young adolescents, bite plates can be an effective preventive measure. In cases involving structural issues of the jaw, orthognathic surgery might be necessary.

To determine the most suitable treatment option for your unique situation, it is crucial to consult with a professional orthodontist.

They can provide a personalised treatment plan that will achieve the best results for your smile and dental health. Schedule an appointment today to take the first step towards a healthier, more confident smile.

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