An overbite can be frustrating for both practical and cosmetic reasons—the skewed position of your teeth causes an inconsistent and crooked pressure on your teeth and jaws, which can develop into painful conditions if left untreated. Thankfully, overbites can be fixed! Here are a few strategies you might consider using if you need to have your overbite corrected.
According to Love Orthodontics, Invisalign is a popular option for its much more subtle appearance and quick results. After a thorough x-ray of your teeth, individualized plastic trays are created with a mold of your teeth, each “set” of trays pushing your teeth into proper positions bit by bit over a period of months. Consistency and diligence are key for Invisalign users—the trays must be worn for at least 22 hours per day but can be taken out for meals and cleaning. This is a more expensive option than other methods like braces, but is worth the cost to many who prefer the clear plastic to metal, as well as the expedited timeline.
The most common form of treatment for an overbite is braces! Braces come with a long list of benefits, including the reduction of likelihood for cavities (that “tray” options may find more common, if food gets stuck in the tray and is constantly pressed up against the tooth), and reduced chance of chipping teeth or grinding them. Of course, they also come with some less pleasant side effects. Braces require that the patient take specialized care of their teeth through a restricted diet and altered methods of cleaning. For example, according to Maccaro Pediatric Dentistry, certain foods that are hard and sticky should be avoided when you have braces. This prevents sticky sugar from getting lodged around the unmoving metal and creating harmful soft spots for cavities. Braces effectively shift teeth into proper placement with little thought from the patient, aligning their bite easily.
If your overbite is severe enough—if your upper and lower teeth are spaced by a few millimeters or more—you may need corrective surgery to repair your overbite damage. Your jaw is an important part of speaking, eating, and even breathing. If it is crooked, painful and dangerous issues can develop! Corrective surgery in this case involves manually repositioning the jaw, screwing it into place and allowing time (with the screws in) for the jaw to heal into its proper, natural place. This is a more common option for adults whose jaws aren’t soft enough to be manipulated by braces or Invisalign.
Take care of this medical need through whatever means works best for your budget, timeline, and preferences. Correcting an overbite is a process that you will be grateful to have done when your jaws and teeth feel and function better than ever before.
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