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Overbite Treatment

Dr. Sumaiya Khan Apr 29, 2019
Treatment of overbite consists of dealing with protruded upper teeth or jaw. Read more on overbite treatment and correction options.
An overbite is a serious condition where the upper teeth, jaw or both are forwardly placed and can lead to a lot of problems. There are many problems that can occur if this condition is not dealt with. Firstly, the person needs to deal with the problem of unsightly aesthetics. This can lead to he/she becoming very conscious about his/her smile.
Also, when a person has a severe overbite, it becomes very difficult to maintain dental health as access to posterior regions of the jaw while brushing teeth becomes tricky. Also, it is often accompanied by other problems, like crowded teeth in the lower jaw, plaque, bad breath, etc. Hence, it is important to go in for treatment to correct this condition.
Overbites can be of two types. The first type is a dental overbite, i.e., the problem is only due to forwardly proclined teeth, which is also known as buck teeth. The other type is the skeletal overbite. In this type, the jawbones themselves are either too forwardly or backwardly placed.
In either case, the treatment plan formulated for correction will depend on the type of overbite. Given here are details regarding the different treatment options.

Orthodontic Braces

When the problem is purely dental, the best treatment option is to go in for orthodontic braces. Indeed, the option of orthodontic treatment is popular for adults and children alike. This is because, with the help of orthodontic braces, a person can help get a beautiful smile.
In simple words, when the problem is merely dental, the treatment plan will be same as that for buck teeth correction. In this procedure, the dentist fixes brackets and wires on the teeth, and by tightening the wires, force is applied to help bring them into the desired position.
There are also options like making use of ceramic braces or invisalign braces for people that are overly bothered about their appearance.

Orthognathic Surgery

In cases where there is a severe overbite, treatment with the help of braces is not of much help. This is because if the jawbone itself is forwardly placed, then merely pushing the teeth back with the help of orthodontic braces will not suffice. In such cases, there is need for surgical intervention to bring about a worthwhile improvement in the overbite.
Hence, this is a great quick-fix option for people who wish to go in for a correction without braces. This option will depend on the exact causative factor and the extent of the problem. Normally, a skeletal overbite is caused due to either a very forwardly placed maxilla (upper jawbone), backwardly placed mandible (lower jawbone), or both. 
There are certain congenital conditions that lead to a small lower jawbone right from birth, which is known as micrognathia. This condition cannot be dealt with even with the help of surgery, as the growth of the jaw itself is insufficient and stunted.
When there is a normal mandible that is only backwardly placed, there is a chance that the treatment without braces can be quite impressive, with excellent results and prognosis. The overbite surgery for dealing with a protruded maxilla is known as Le Fort I osteotomy.
In this procedure, the maxilla and palate is separated from the rest of the skull and is placed in the desired position. The maxilla is fixed with the help of titanium screws and plates so as to secure it in its new position. The surgery for a retruded mandible is known as sagittal split osteotomy. Firstly, the person needs to extract his/her wisdom teeth. 
After this, the back of the lower jaw is split in the region of the wisdom teeth on both sides. The jaw is then brought forward by splitting the jaw and then pulling it forward. While securing the mandible in this new position, the surgeon needs to take care to ensure that there is adequate bone contact for proper healing. 
The bone is fixed into its new position with the help of screws. After the surgery, the upper and lower jaws are attached with the help of an elastic band traction, which is kept in place for around one or two weeks. This way, the person gets used to a fixed position in which to close the mouth.
These were the overbite treatment options depending on the type and severity of the condition. This serious condition should be treated on priority to avoid other dental problems later, like gum diseases or bad oral hygiene. With a little bit of care and some awareness, one can always get rid of an overbite and get an enviable set of pearly whites.