An overbite can cause you to become self-conscious about your smile, and that is where O’Gara-Gilbert Orthodontics can help. The good news is overbites can be corrected! While the remedy depends on the severity of the problem and the patient’s age, orthodontic treatment with braces or Invisalign are usually part of the treatment.
We’ll answer the question: how do braces fix an overbite? This way, you can make informed decisions when seeking overbite treatment options.
What Is an Overbite?
Ideally, there should be a slight overlap of the upper teeth with the bottom teeth of about 20 percent when the mouth is closed. Anything bigger than that is considered an overbite and will require orthodontic treatment.
Overbites, commonly called buck teeth, are cases where the top teeth protrude over the bottom teeth. Some overbites are more subtle than others, so the best way to know if you have one is to visit O’Gara-Gilbert Orthodontics for a complimentary new patient exam.
What Causes an Overbite?
Crooked teeth and misaligned jaws are often inherited from your genetic background. Children with parents who have an overbite are more likely to develop one. Overbites can be corrected if you seek early treatment. The American Association of Orthodontists recommends seeing an orthodontist by seven years old.
Aside from genetics, some habits can also lead to an increased risk of an overbite. For example, prolonged thumb sucking and extended pacifier use in children can lead them to develop teeth deformities. For adults, excessive nail-biting, teeth grinding and chewing on hard objects (like pens) may also lead to jaw misalignment.
Do Braces Fix An Overbite?
Many orthodontists will recommend braces to fix a misaligned jaw because they effectively treat most overbite issues.
So how do braces fix an overbite? The treatment process starts with the assessment stage.
First, X-rays will be taken to determine the condition your teeth are in, allowing Dr. O’Gara and Dr. Gilbert to determine the overbite type and the relationship between the jaw and teeth.Then, the attachment of the braces comes next. This process involves fastening metal brackets to the top and bottom teeth and then connecting them with wires, which are periodically adjusted to straighten the teeth. Once the straightening is complete, fixing the overbite follows.
Some treatment options that are often used in conjunction with braces are:
- Rubber bands: Rubber bands are attached to the brackets on the upper and lower teeth to apply extra pressure. You can remove these bands when eating or brushing your teeth. We will show you how to attach them for the best results.
- Palatal expander: A palatal expander is used if the upper jaw is too small or overcrowded. The expander slowly widens the palate over the following weeks or months.
- Tooth extraction: When overcrowding is a significant problem, the orthodontist may recommend tooth extraction to create more space in the mouth.
- Jaw surgery: Surgery may be needed to position the jaw correctly. However, jaw surgery is reserved for severe overbite cases.
Are Braces Removable?
Essentially, braces can be removed by your orthodontist, but you shouldn’t remove them until the treatment is complete. Doing so will only jeopardize the health of your teeth and mouth. Instead, the best thing to do is wait for your orthodontist’s recommendation to remove your braces to ensure you receive the best results.
Use Braces to Perfect Your Smile With O’Gara-Gilbert Orthodontics
It’s important to partner with an experienced orthodontist to place and care for your braces. Our experienced team works hard to ensure the best results with state-of-the-art technology. Dr. O’Gara and Dr. Gilbert’s commitment to excellent results and passion for creating healthy and beautiful smiles means that you will leave our office having received the best possible care and the smile of your dreams.