Your Bremerton, Gig Harbor, & Port Orchard, WA Orthodontist
At Lingenbrink Orthodontics, we strive to provide high quality orthodontic care while maintaining a fun, friendly office environment. Dr. Lingenbrink and our highly trained team of orthodontic specialists are committed to your orthodontic success, and we pride ourselves on crafting personalized treatment plans to perfectly suit every patient's unique needs. Orthodontic disorders come in many forms, but there are a few common problems that we see almost every day in the office - read on for a list of the most common orthodontic problems.
Crossbite is characterized by the upper teeth sitting inside of the lower teeth, and can occur in the front or back of the mouth - or even with just a single tooth. If left untreated, it can contribute to premature tooth wear, gum disease, asymmetrical jaw development, dysfunctional chewing, and aesthetic problems.
Here's a case of anterior (back of the mouth) crossbite:
How is Crossbite Treated?
If just one tooth is affeected, braces or even a retainer can do the job. If the problem affects multiple teeth, braces or other orthodontic appliances can be used to expand the dental arch.
Openbite occurs when the front teeth don't meet when the jaw is closed. It can be caused by habits like tongue thrusting or prolonged thumb sucking, or may be a result of uneven jaw growth.
Here's a case of openbite before and after treatment:
How is Openbite Treated?
Braces are often enough to treat openbite, but sometimes surgical procedures may be necessary. To ensure successful treatment, unwanted habits like digit sucking or tongue thrusting will also need to be changed.
Overbite, also called deep bite, is characterized by the upper front teeth extending too far over the lower teeth, leaving no points of contact between the upper and lower front teeth and in some cases causing the lower teeth to bite into the roof of the mount. Generally, it's caused by uneven tooth eruption or overdevelopment of the upper front jawbone. If left alone, overbite can cause a variety of problems including:
- Improper tooth function
- Tissue problems from the lower teeth biting into the upper palate
- Uneven tooth ear
- Jaw or joint pain & problems
- Aesthetic issues
Here's a case of overbite before and after treatment:
How Can Overbite Be Treated?
Generally, we'll use braces or another appliance to move the front teeth up while bringing the back teeth together, which will "open up" the bite and allow proper tooth alignment.
Also called protrusion, this occurs when the lower front teeth sit too far behind their upper neighbors. This is commonly caused by improper molar alignment, skeletal imbalances, missing teeth, flared incisors, or any combination of these factors. Similar to openbite, unwanted habits like tongue thrusting can exacerbate overjet. Untreated, it can cause premature and uneven tooth wear, improper tooth function, and aesthetic problems.
Here's a case of overjet before and after treatment:
How is Overjet Treated?
Overject is corrected through a process called growth modification. We'll use a functional appliance or braces with elastics to guide jaw growth, reducing skeletal imbalances in the mouth. In severe cases, we may also extract teeth to increase symmetry.
The opposite of overbite, this is where the lower teeth extend past the upper. Generally, the root of this problem lies in improper jaw development, but it can also be caused by flared upper incisors or missing teeth. Underbite can cause a variety of problems, including:
- Improper chewing patterns
- Premature tooth wear
- Jaw or joint pain
- Aesthetic issues
Here's a before and after of underbite:
How is Underbite Corrected?
Ideally, we'll treat underbite through growth modification using braces or another appliance, but in severe cases it may require tooth extraction or surgical procedures.
Contact Your Orthodontic Specialists
Have more questions about bite problems or want to discuss your own treatment? We're here to help! Feel free to reach out to us at our contact page or use our easy online form to schedule an appointment at our Bremerton, Port Orchard, or Gig Harbor, WA offices. We can't wait to hear from you, and we look forward to helping you achieve a beautiful, healthy smile!