Underbite is a kind of malocclusion, in which the lower set of teeth appear to be more prominent or extent outward than the upper set of teeth. Some cases of malocclusion are barely noticeable, although underbites usually look cause what’s known as “bulldog-like appearance”. Underbite can be a serious issue beyond the obvious cosmetic aspect. The person may have a hard time chewing food and the condition can impact other teeth and the gums in severe cases. Today, with underbite braces and other treatment options, the condition can be treated at almost any age.
What causes an underbite?
Malocclusion can be inherited, but underbite can occur owing to other factors and habits in childhood, such as pushing the teeth with tongue, use of pacifiers and thumb sucking. A person is likely to develop an underbite someone in the family has the problem. Injuries can also cause damage to the jawbone, which can lead to an underbite in some cases, although this kind of situations are best managed with surgery.
Treatment for underbite
Mild underbite doesn’t require medical attention, but if a person has issues with speech and chewing, an underbite can be a big problem. Treatment helps in preventing risks related to tooth and gum diseases, and it’s easier to maintain dental hygiene, including brushing and flossing. If you believe that you have an underbite that doesn’t need any treatment, consider seeing a doctor and take an opinion. In less severe cases, underbite braces such as Invisalign are great for correcting the positioning of the teeth, and in some cases, one tooth or two can be removed. In extreme situations, underbite must be corrected with surgery, and you need a good clinic and a specialized oral surgeon for the procedure.
Other things to know
The good thing is underbite can be corrected at any age, and with options such as Invisalign, adults can recover from the condition within a year. It depends on many factors, including the age of the person, the braces used, and the condition of the teeth. Be sure of sharing your problems with the dentist in detail, ask relevant questions, and discuss the costs. Treatments with braces doesn’t have to cost huge, but surgeries can be expensive. Underbite treatment can be covered under insurance in some cases, so check your policy for details.
If you have an underbite, fret not because with modern dentistry, even the worst cases can be treated.