What To Know About Having An Overbite

Do you have an overbite, where your upper teeth have an excessive overlap past the lower teeth? If so, you probably have some questions about this unique dental issue that can be corrected.  

What Causes An Overbite?

There are a few different reasons why you may have an overbite. A common reason is childhood habits that caused the overbite over time, such as thumb sucking or using a pacifier for way too long. It can also be a genetic issue that was inherited from your parents and has nothing to do with habits that could have caused it to form. Injuries can also cause an overbite to develop over time.

Is Any Type Of Overbite Okay?

It is perfectly fine to have some sort of overbite where the upper teeth stick out past the lower teeth. It is the excessive amount of gap between the teeth when it is a concern. Having teeth that are perfectly aligned with the top and bottom teeth touching is not good either, since you want your molars to touch for chewing.

Why Is A Severe Overbite Bad?

Having a severe overbite can cause a lot of complications because you cannot bite and chew food like your teeth were meant to. You end up using an irregular biting motion, which wears your teeth down prematurely and causes TMJ. Having upper teeth that are fast past the lower teeth also makes you more prone to teeth-related injuries. If you experience any sort of trauma to your mouth you are more likely to damage your upper teeth because they are not laying flat against the lower teeth.

In addition, there are various other problems that can be caused by an overbite. It can cause lisps, speech impediments, not allowing your lips to close together, and even cause mouth breathing issues. 

How Do You Fix An Overbite? 

An overbite that is causing functional issues should be corrected by your dentist. Young children may be given a removable retainer since it is best for teeth that are still growing. Braces can also work as well, depending on the severity of the overbite and how much it needs to be corrected. A jaw expander is also an option as well. Your dentist can let you know more about each type of treatment option, and recommend the best one for your needs. Surgery is not typically recommended unless you have an extreme overbite that cannot be corrected with a simpler treatment option. 

Reach out to a local dentist to learn more.