Malocclusion means having crooked teeth, or poor bite. The “Bite” is the way your upper and lower teeth line up. Very few people have a perfect bite. It actually quite normal for your upper teeth to sit slightly over your bottom teeth.
The majority of the time, malocclusion is only a cosmetic problem. It might only start off as a cosmetic issue, but it can lead to tooth decay. The reason being is that crooked or misaligned teeth can be harder to brush and floss. Also, some people might have a reluctance to brushing and flossing since they do not like the physical appearance of them.
Orthodontic treatment can be the solution to correct misaligned teeth. This will often help restore a person self-esteem in their appearance. The name for dentists who can fix misaligned teeth is Orthodontists.
Causes of malocclusion.
The most common reason for the misalignment of your teeth is a problem with the shape or size of your jaw or teeth. A common cause is having too much or too little room in the jaw. If your jaw is too small the teeth become crowded and follow the path of least resistance. Thumb sucking and pacifier use can also can peoples teeth to be misaligned.
The most obvious sign is crooked or teeth that stick out. One example is buck teeth. Where the front teeth push outwards from the mouth instead of down.
At normal checkup is when the dentist will look for signs that you or your children have malocclusion. If there are signs of misalignment, your dentist might recommend seeing an Orthodontist.
Teens and kids normally have an overcrowding problem. The first step might be to remove some of the baby teeth will fall out normally. This can help with overcrowding issues.
Braces can then be fitted to help straighten out the permanent teeth. If there is a major misalignment of your jaw, you might require surgery. Teeth can and will naturally drift out of place, even after you have braces. So to help with that they give you a retainer to wear at night and even sometimes during the day.
Treatment can take up to 24 months to be fully completed. Also, the treatment can be expensive so it is a good idea to check with your insurance to see if any treatments are covered with them.
Contact your dentist if you have any questions about the alignment of your teeth.