A Basic Overview of Malocclusion
An important part of your skeletal development is a functional and healthy formation of your occlusion, or “bite.” Occlusion refers to how the top and bottom teeth fit together. Dental malocclusion affects 1 in 5 people, and occurs when you have crooked teeth and/or a misaligned bite. There are 3 different types of dental malocclusion:
Common Forms of Malocclusion
Open Bite — An open bite occurs when the molars of a patient’s mouth fit normally, but the upper front teeth don’t overlap the bottom front teeth, leaving a significant gap straight into the mouth on either side.
Overbite — An overbite occurs when the upper front teeth overlap too far down over the bottom front teeth. In these scenarios, the upper part of the jaw is too far forward. In severe cases the bottom teeth can be positioned so far back that they might actually bite into the roof of your mouth.
Underbite — An underbite is essentially the opposite of an overbite. In this scenario, your bottom lower teeth actually project out farther forward than your upper front teeth.
Problems with Spacing and Crowding — Sometimes the positioning of the jaw is fine, but when there is too much or too little room for your teeth, spacing or crowding problems can occur, which can result in a malocclusion.
Crossbite — A crossbite occurs when any of the upper teeth fit on the wrong side of the bottom teeth.
…And More — There are additional types of malocclusion, so if you feel your occlusion is abnormal and not listed here, our Patient Service team will be more than happy to assist you in answering questions and/or scheduling a consultation.
How Does Malocclusion Happen?
Do Malocclusion Create More Problems?