A Complete Guide On How To Correct An Overbite

An overbite, also known as a malocclusion, occurs when the upper teeth excessively overlap the lower front teeth.

What Causes an Overbite?

Several factors can contribute to the development of an overbite, including:

Genetics 

Genetics plays a significant role in determining the size and shape of the jaws, as well as the alignment of the teeth. Individuals with a family history of overbites are more likely to develop a severe overbite themselves.

Jaw Size Discrepancy

Discrepancies in the size of the upper and lower jaws can lead to a skeletal overbite. For example, if the upper jaw is larger than the lower jaw or if the lower jaw is positioned too far back, it can result in the upper front teeth protruding over the lower front teeth.

Thumb Sucking or Pacifier Use

Prolonged thumb sucking or the use of a pacifier beyond infancy can alter the growth and development of the jaws and teeth, potentially contributing to the development of an overbite.

Tongue Thrusting

Habitual tongue thrusting, where the tongue pushes against the front teeth during swallowing, speaking, or resting, can put pressure on the teeth and jaw, leading to excessive teeth overlap overtime.

Malpositioned Teeth

Irregularities in the alignment of the teeth, such as crowding, spacing, or missing teeth, can disrupt the natural bite relationship and contribute to the development of an overbite.

Childhood Habits

Certain childhood habits, such as prolonged bottle feeding or using a pacifier, can impact the growth and development of the jaws and teeth, increasing the risk of developing an overbite.

Injury or Trauma

Traumatic injuries to the face or jaw, particularly during childhood when the jaws are still developing, can affect the alignment of the teeth and contribute to the development of an overbite.

Overbite Correction

Correcting an overbite typically involves a combination of orthodontic treatment, lifestyle modifications, and, in some cases, surgical intervention. The specific approach to fixing an overbite depends on factors such as the severity of the overbite, the age of the patient, and their individual needs and preferences. Here’s a detailed guide on how to fix an overbite:

Consultation with an Orthodontist

Begin by scheduling a consultation with an orthodontist. During this initial visit, the orthodontist will conduct a thorough examination of your teeth, jaws, and bite to determine the severity and underlying causes of the overbite.

Orthodontic Treatment Options

There are many different treatment options to address a dental overbite: 

Braces 

Traditional braces are a common and effective treatment for correcting overbites. Traditional metal braces consist of metal brackets attached to the teeth, connected by wires and bands. By applying gentle pressure, braces gradually shift the upper and lower teeth into the correct position, helping to improve the bite alignment.

Clear Aligners

Clear aligner systems, such as Invisalign, offer a more discreet alternative to traditional braces. These transparent, removable trays are custom-made to fit snugly over the teeth and apply gentle pressure to gradually move them into alignment.

Orthodontic Headgear

In cases of more severe overbites, orthodontic headgear may be recommended. Headgear consists of a metal wire device attached to braces or a custom-fitted appliance worn around the head. It applies external force to the teeth and jaws, helping to guide their growth and alignment.

Palatal Expanders

For overbites caused by a narrow upper jaw, palatal expanders may be used to widen the palate gradually. This creates more space for the teeth to align properly and can help correct certain types of overbites.

Surgical Intervention

In severe cases of overbite where orthodontic treatment alone may not suffice, orthognathic surgery (jaw surgery) may be necessary. This surgical procedure involves repositioning the upper and/or lower jaw to achieve proper alignment and balance between the jaws. Orthognathic surgery is typically performed in conjunction with orthodontic treatment to optimise results and improve both aesthetics and function.

Follow-Up Care

Regular follow-up appointments with your orthodontist are crucial throughout the treatment process. These appointments allow the orthodontist to monitor progress, make adjustments as needed, and ensure that the treatment is proceeding as planned.

Maintaining Oral Hygiene

Proper oral hygiene is essential during orthodontic treatment to prevent cavities, gum disease, and other oral health issues. Follow your orthodontist’s instructions for brushing, flossing, and using any cleaning tools to keep your teeth and braces or aligners clean.

Wearing Retainers

Once the active phase of orthodontic treatment is complete, wearing retainers is necessary to maintain the results. Retainers help prevent teeth from shifting back into their original positions and should be worn as directed by your orthodontist.

Lifestyle Modifications

Avoid habits that can exacerbate an overbite, such as thumb sucking or using teeth as tools. Additionally, practising good posture and chewing food properly can support proper jaw alignment and overall oral health.

Regular Dental Check-Ups

Even after treatment is complete, it’s important to attend regular dental check-ups to ensure your teeth and bite remain healthy and stable.

Contact The Orthodontic Place

Correcting a dental overbite requires a collaborative effort between the patient and the orthodontic team. Contact The Orthodontic Place today to get started on your overbite treatment.

The Team

Once you consult with our team at The Orthodontic Place, you won’t ever have to search online for ‘Scanning and Remote Monitoring’ ever again. We prioritise your happiness and satisfaction at all times, making sure that you’re left with a beautiful and confident smile that you love.

You can visit us at either of our two nearby clinics in Kent Town and Hindmarsh, South Australia. Call us, book an appointment, or schedule a free virtual consultation today!