An overbite is a condition in which the upper and lower teeth overlap to an excessive degree. An ideal overbite is where the degree of overlap is about one or two millimeters. Some people have a vertical overbite that is four to 10 millimeters deep. An overbite that is this deep can cause the chin to be pushed back towards the jaw joint. This, in turn, can lead to pain in the jaw, headaches, clenching and grinding of the teeth. Patients with deep overbites can sometimes have short, round faces. Corrective oral surgery can actually improve the shape of the patient’s face, as well as make chewing easier, and alleviate facial/jaw pain. An overbite can be corrected in three ways.
Braces are the most common way to correct an overbite. There are two stages to this type of treatment. Initially, the focus is on straightening the teeth. Once this has been corrected, the overbite can be fixed. In this instance, your dentist will use braces with rubber bands to pull your upper teeth back into alignment. Depending on the severity of your overbite, this stage can last anywhere from several months to two years. One disadvantage of braces is that they make it more difficult to clean your teeth, which means your risk of tooth decay and gum problems is higher.
Treatment with Invisalign requires you to wear transparent aligners throughout the day to move your teeth into proper alignment. Every two weeks, your dentist will switch out the aligners so the progression will continue. Like braces, Invisalign treatment takes between several months and two years. If your overbite is not too severe, the aligners will move your teeth and correct your overbite. This is an ideal solution for mild to moderate conditions.
If your overbite is extreme, surgery may be required to correct it. For the best results, corrective surgery should be performed after the age of 16 for girls and 18 for boys, when your jaw has stopped growing.
Here at Riverside Oral & Facial Surgery, we are dedicated to providing the best oral and facial skeletal surgery, facial cosmetic surgery, and facial skin care available in northwest Georgia. We take great pride in serving our patient’s needs using cutting-edge equipment and techniques. If you would like to know more about dental implants, contact us today.