How to Fix an Underbite
Fixing Underbites in Colorado
An underbite is a misalignment of the jaw that causes the lower teeth to protrude beyond the upper teeth. This is also known as a Class III malocclusion or “reverse bite.” About 5-10% of the population are affected by underbites. Underbites can range from mild cases that are hardly noticeable, to severe cases where the lower jaw extends out far beyond the upper jaw.
Having an underbite can dramatically affect a person’s self-confidence about their smile. Our office provides underbite correction services to help you achieve a smile you are confident in. Treating an underbite depends on your age and the severity of your underbite. The most common methods to correct an underbite include:
Upper Jaw Expander
This option is usually recommended if the upper jaw is small in width. The expander works by being fitted across the patient’s palate and gradually widens the jaw so that the lower teeth match better with the lower teeth.
This type of headgear is used to pull the upper jaw forward. This option works most effectively for patients under the age of 10.
Braces or Clear Aligners
This option is suitable for any patient – children or adult. Braces or clear aligners can be an effective treatment for underbites, especially if orthodontic elastics are worn.
Sometimes, tooth extraction may be necessary to correct an underbite. This option involves carefully selected teeth to help spacing issues in mild to moderate cases.
Surgery is the recommended treatment for adults with severe underbites that have been left untreated. Orthognathic jaw surgery can be required to align the upper and lower jaws into their idea positions. The surgery is low-risk and very predictable. In some cases, a referral to a maxillofacial surgeon will be provided by your specialist orthodontist.
The key to correcting an underbite is early diagnosis. However, it can still be treated as an adult. If you are curious about underbite correction, please call our one of our offices using the buttons below.