An underbite is characterized by the lower jaw extending out, causing the lower front teeth to sit in front of the upper front teeth. You may hear Dr. Gamache refer to this as an ‘anterior crossbite’ or a ‘Class III malocclusion’ during your exam.
Spacing may be the result of many factors, such as missing teeth, small teeth, or large dental arches. However, the spacing may only be a cosmetic or aesthetic issue.
The appearance and function of your teeth are impacted by this type of bite. It is characterized by the upper teeth extending too far forward or the lower teeth not extending far enough forward. You may hear Dr. Gamache refer to this as a ‘large overjet’ or a ‘Class II malocclusion’ during your exam.
Crowding occurs when teeth have insufficient room to erupt from the gums. Crowding can often be corrected by expansion of the dental arches or slenderizing of some of the teeth. If crowding can be resolved this way, it is often possible to avoid removal of teeth to achieve the needed space for tooth alignment in stable positions.
The upper teeth sit inside the lower teeth as opposed to the upper teeth sitting outside of the lower teeth as in a normal bite. This type of bite often results in altered jaw growth if not corrected, which can lead to the need for corrective jaw surgery in the future. This is why the American Association of Orthodontists recommends children start being seen by their orthodontist by age 7, so that these situations can be watched for and corrected early as opposed to resulting in the need for surgery in the future.
The upper front teeth overlap the lower front teeth vertically more than normal, sometimes causing the lower front teeth to bite into the roof of the mouth.
In this type of bite, the upper and lower front teeth do not overlap, preventing normal chewing abilities such as biting through a sandwich. Openbite may cause a number of unwanted habits, such as tongue thrusting.
The contact points between the front middle teeth do not line up between the upper and lower arches. This type of problem is caused when the back bite does not fit and match appropriately, which may negatively impact jaw growth and proper dental function.