Thursday, December 19, 2013

Holiday Candy Caution

You don't often think of candy caution with this time of year. Please remember when you are looking at all the wonderful cookies with nuts, candy canes and other hard/sticky items to be careful. Breaking brackets, retainers or causing arch wires to shift can prolong treatment times and cause other opportunities for problems within your treatment. Have a wonderful holiday season. Have a wonderful holiday season from your friends at Sondhi-Biggs Orthodontics.

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Crossbite, overbite, and underbite... What's the difference?

As you know, your overall health is connected to your oral health. When your teeth and jaws are not properly aligned, your breathing, speech, and overall appearance could be affected. As a result of malocclusion, also commonly referred to as a "bad bite", your teeth may become worn, or have other effects of long term damage. The only way to properly address and correct your malocclusion is with orthodontic treatment, usually with braces.

A malocclusion may also be referred to as an underbite, crossbite or overbite. The difference in the 3 types of malocclusions are explained below:

  • Crossbite: This could be one single tooth or an entire section of your mouth in which the upper and lower jaws are misaligned, usually causing one or more upper teeth to bite inside the lower teeth. Crossbites can happen on the front or along the sides of your mouth and are known to cause wear on the teeth, gum disease and/or bone loss.
  • Overbite: The upper teeth overlap the lower teeth excessively. Overbites can lead to gum issues or irritation and even wear on the lower teeth, and can potentially cause jaw pain or possible jaw joint problems. An overbite can be caused by oral habits, such as thumb sucking.
  • Underbite: The lower teeth protrude past the front teeth. This can be caused by undergrowth of the upper jaw, overgrowth of the lower jaw, or a combination. Underbites can also be caused by missing upper teeth, which can prevent the normal function of the front teeth. This, in turn, leads to unfavorable wear on teeth, and possible TMJ issues.
Fortunately, we are able to treat these bite problems.  If you suspect you or your child has a bite misalignment, we encourage you to contact any of our Sondhi-Biggs staff members to address your concerns. By initiating an orthodontic consultation at the ADA recommended age of 7, you can help your child avoid years of unnecessary problems and/or self-consciousness about their teeth. Our doctors will evaluate your child to determine whether treatment now or later is in their best interest.