Overbites and Underbites

A smile is guaranteed to improve your mood. The lyrics of the famous song When You’re Smiling contain the phrase that “the whole world smiles with you.” Problems with misaligned teeth may cause you to feel self-conscious about your smile. In addition to crooked teeth, your smile may reveal an overbite or an underbite. These conditions are known as malocclusions.

An overbite is a condition where your upper teeth extend farther forward than the teeth in the lower jaw. When the opposite alignment is present, the condition is called an underbite. An overbite is more common in the United States. Several factors can cause an overbite or an underbite. Your genetics may cause your upper jaw to develop less than the lower part of your mouth. This uncommon condition results in an underbite. Another genetic feature, which is more common, is when your lower jaw under-develops relative to the upper portion. This creates an overbite.

A bad habit, such as sucking your thumb or a pacifier for too long a period, can create an overbite or underbite as well. Pushing on your lower teeth with your tongue can also cause an underbite. Abnormalities in your jaw bone and poor chewing habits can create a misalignment in your teeth that results in an overbite or an underbite. Another common cause for misaligned teeth is that it was simply the position in which your teeth erupted from the gums.

Misaligned teeth can affect the structure and appearance of your face, making you self-conscious. These malocclusions can lead to other complications, like problems chewing, speech impediments and strained jaw muscles. You may also suffer from worn tooth enamel, damage to soft tissue within your mouth and an increased possibility of trauma to your front teeth. These conditions increase the chance of tooth decay and the development of gum disease.

Even though you can visually see the misalignment, you should still schedule an appointment with an experienced dentist to determine if corrective action is warranted. At Lach Orthodontic Specialists in Orlando and Oviedo, we will review your medical history and discuss your situation. During the examination, X-rays, teeth impressions and photographs of your face will help develop a course of action that will produce the best possible outcome. The treatment may include wearing braces or an orthodontic appliance.

If you feel your jaw alignment is abnormal and you are unhappy with your overall appearance, these treatments can produce the permanent solution necessary to create the smile that you desire. Contact us today to schedule your appointment.