The anatomy of human teeth is naturally designed for biting into edible items of different textures. When a person fully closes the mouth and bites, the upper and lower teeth are supposed to lock into each other nicely just like puzzle pieces. An overbite is essentially an abnormality of the upper jaw and lower jaw. This condition causes an obvious protrusion of the upper teeth even when the jaws aren’t moving. In a situation such as this, overbite treatment may be necessary to improve a patient’s dental health and prevent future problems.
An overbite can be caused by several genetic and environmental factors. Young children who suck on thumbs, bottles and other items are at a very high risk of developing this type of malocclusion. Chewing gum and thrusting the tongue frequently can also lead to the improper formation of the jaw and teeth. It’s important to note that the bone structures of children are relatively soft and elastic until they harden during the teen years. Therefore, it’s important to diagnose an overbite at a very early age in order to increase the potential for a successful treatment plan. Diagnostic methods such as dental x-rays can precisely reveal the positions of the buds of permanent teeth that will eventually erupt and cause an excessive bite formation.
Different Methods of Overbite Treatment
Our orthodontist can offer several viable overbite treatment options for patients with any form of an overbite. Mild to moderate cases can often be corrected with traditional metal braces that are installed on the front of teeth. Ceramic braces and clear aligners are also available to treat this type of malocclusion. Both options come with more convenience and cosmetic appeal than classic metal braces.
Preparation for Overbite Treatment
Some moderate and severe overbites can only be fixed with a combination of orthodontic treatment and oral surgery. A maxillofacial surgeon can alter the structure of the upper and lower jaws in order to increase the effectiveness of braces or aligners. Additionally, some major extractions of canines and molars might have to be done to facilitate orthodontic treatment. Incisors are rarely extracted because of the very important role they play in eating and speech. The goal of any orthodontic plan should be to move incisors into desirable positions. During your first appointment with Dr. Bowman, he can give you an idea of what type of overbite treatment you can expect.
What Happens After Treatment
After braces are taken off, retainers are prescribed to prevent a relapse. These removable mouthpieces are designed to apply firm pressure on the teeth, gums and jaw. Retainers must be worn daily for multiple years in order to induce long-term stability of a newly formed bite.
Overbites can fortunately be effectively treated with the proper orthodontic overbite treatment. The offices of Brodie Bowman, DMD are pleased to serve the Fort Walton Beach and Niceville areas with customized orthodontic treatment plans tailored to every patient’s needs. Contact us today to schedule your consultation and learn more about the services we offer.