What Is Malocclusion?
When your dentist talks about your bite, they refer to how the upper and lower teeth come together. This is known as occlusion. A normal, healthy bite has the upper teeth naturally meeting slightly in front of the lower teeth when the mouth is closed. Any variation from this position is a condition called malocclusion.
Malocclusion is a clinical word describing someone with crooked or misaligned teeth. This condition can create oral problems, like mouth breathing and grinding. Fortunately, it can be treated with orthodontics, creating a healthy and beautiful smile.
Types of Malocclusion
There are three classifications: Class I, Class II, and Class III.
- Class I Malocclusion has the upper teeth slightly overlapping the lower teeth
- Class II Malocclusion is an overbite where the upper teeth extend over the lower teeth
- Class III Malocclusion is an underbite where the lower teeth protrude over the upper teeth
These conditions are often caused by thumbsucking or tongue thrusting during childhood. Overcrowding may cause a shift in teeth in patients with a smaller jaw that lacks adequate space for the adult molars to erupt.
How Is This Misalignment Treated?
Malocclusion is treated with the help of orthodontics. After a visual examination, x-rays, and impressions, an orthodontist will determine the best course of treatment.
Treatment may include the following:
- Traditional braces
This process may take up to two years or longer for more severe cases. The goal of orthodontic treatment to correct misalignment to shift the physiological aspects of the patient’s teeth, gums and jaw to correct the malocclusion and create better alignment of the top and bottom teeth. This procedure has cosmetic benefits, as well as oral health benefits. Teeth that are out of place or over-extended are more prone to injury.
Begin Your Malocclusion Treatment Today
If you have crooked, overcrowded teeth or other concerns about your bite, contact Empire Dental Orthodontic Specialists. We can develop a treatment plan to address your condition and get you on the road to a perfect, healthy smile! Schedule a free orthodontic consultation at our Beavercreek or West Chester orthodontic office today.