An underbite is a dental abnormality; aside from causing functional complications, it can also make you self-conscious about your appearance. Fortunately, there are several methods of underbite correction, including oral surgery.
What Is an Underbite?
Most people know what an overbite is, but an underbite is a less common term. Clinically known as a malocclusion, an underbite is a condition where the lower teeth extend past the upper teeth. The degree of overlap varies and can range from mild to severe. In the latter cases, the overt protrusion can create an appearance similar to that of a bulldog.
Issues with an Underbite
Beyond the undesirable appearance, an underbite can also cause a number of difficulties, such as difficulty eating and speaking. Those with malocclusion are also at an increased risk of developing chronic jaw pain and migraines. Additional issues include teeth decay, bacterial infections, and halitosis.
We mentioned earlier that oral surgery is an option. Actually, this is used more rarely. Only in extreme cases will you require a surgical operation known as orthognathic jaw surgery. Far more likely, you will consult with an endodontist who will recommend one of these two noninvasive procedures:
- Jaw Expander: this is a piece of wire-frame positioned over the upper teeth. A key-like device is used every day to widen the expander. This gradually expands the upper jaw until it’s aligned with the lower teeth. Patients wear the expander for about a year.
- Reverse-Pull Face Mask: This is a headgear that fully wraps around the head that uses metal bands. It slowly pulls the upper back teeth into position.
We Perform Underbite Correction
Underbite treatment is usually performed at a young age. Call Mukilteo Dental Arts if you or a child exhibit signs of malocclusion. Consult with a family dentist to determine if you require underbite correction.
Overbite and Underbite Correction and Treatment
General family dentistry for Mukilteo, Everett, Lynnwood, Edmonds & Mill Creek