Straight teeth does more than making your smile even more beautiful; it also affects your dental function and oral health, making each tooth’s position even more important. However, when you have malocclusion, or when your teeth aren’t aligned with adjacent teeth either in the same arch or on the opposing jaw, you’re at higher risk for various oral health problems. These vary from chewing your food incorrectly to even food digestion.
There are two types of malocclusion to watch out for caused by jaw misalignment: overbite and overjet. Here’s what you need to know about the two and how Ann Arbor dental care can help remedy them:
All About Overbites
Overbites occur when the upper teeth overlap the lower teeth by more than 3 millimeters. With this positioning, your teeth may wear down faster than average since they’re in constant contact with each other. You may also experience jaw pain, difficulty speaking, and even trouble sleeping due to sleep apnea. In severe overbites, the teeth can knock against each other and even damage teeth enamel and gums.
All About Overjets
An overjet is where the teeth on your upper jaw jut out, causing them to extend much further in front of your lower teeth. Although overjets aren’t as noticeable, they can severely affect how you chew, speak, and perform other oral functions. It can also lead to jaw pain and difficulty in fully closing your lips due to the teeth angle.
The Differences Between Overbites and Overjets
Overbites and overjets may look the same, but the primary difference is in the angle at which the upper teeth are positioned. Overbites are misaligned vertically, whereas overjets are horizontal. The upper teeth in overbites point downwards, while overjets protrude diagonally over the lower teeth. Still, it is possible to have both these malocclusions at the same time.
Treating an Overbite and Overjet
Luckily, there are many treatment options available for an overbite or an overjet. It’s best to seek treatment at an early age, such as seven years, to correct it right away. However, if you’re well into adulthood, you can consider Ann Arbor orthodontic options like traditional braces, Invisalign, veneers, and crowns.
Traditional braces are excellent for correcting teeth misalignment since they use metal wires and brackets to adjust them to the desired position. They’re effective for all ages and use more force in correcting teeth, so they’re guaranteed to bring satisfactory results whether you have a moderate or severe misalignment.
Invisalign is an excellent option for those with mild to moderate misalignment and who don’t want metal braces to affect their smile’s visual appearance. Invisalign uses clear trays that fit perfectly over your teeth while simultaneously adjusting their position. While the trays are removable, you must wear them every day for at least 22 hours, only taking them off to eat. Many people prefer Invisalign because it’s more comfortable and easy to clean.
If you’ve experienced chips, tooth discoloration, or even misshapen teeth as a result of these malocclusions, you may want to explore veneers. These are thin custom-made shells that dentists attach to the surfaces of teeth, improving their appearance. An Ann Arbor dentist will match the veneer to the shade of your tooth to make sure it’s unnoticeable while enhancing your smile. They’re incredibly durable and stain-resistant, making them more than viable options.
Malocclusions, particularly overbites and overjets, can affect a person’s confidence in their smile. It’s never too late to achieve the smile you’ve always wanted, as these misalignments are easily fixed with the treatments mentioned above.
If you’re looking for Waterford dental surgery or Ann Arbor dental care, be sure to let us know at Dental House! We are the house of dentistry offering many different dental services, such as dentures, cosmetic dentistry, preventative dentistry, and many more. Contact us today to schedule an appointment and be on the way to achieving your smile goals!