The topic of today’s post is malocclusion, which translates as “bad bite.”
The term “malocclusion” was coined by Edward Angle, a modern orthodontic pioneer. Malocclusion is fairly common in the general population, but fortunately, the misalignment is usually so minor that it causes no problems.
When multiple teeth on two arches and a jaw joint with a significant range of motion are combined, it is easy to see how these elements can fail to align properly. In fact, it’s a wonder that they work at all for most people, allowing them to talk, eat, and breathe without thinking twice.
There are numerous causes of malocclusion, some of which originate in the teeth and others in the jaw. Misshapen teeth, extracted teeth, impacted teeth, crowded teeth, and widely spaced teeth can all have an effect on your bite. Malocclusion can also be caused by jaw injury, as well as poorly fitting restorations and other dental appliances.
With prolonged pacifier use, thumb sucking, or bottle drinking, children with normal bites can develop bite dilemmas. Oral tumors, in rare cases, can cause a bite to become out of alignment.
The treatment for malocclusion is determined by the underlying cause. Orthodontics can realign teeth and correct bite problems. Overcrowding frequently necessitates the extraction of one or more teeth. Crowns or dental bonding can often be used to repair misshapen teeth that affect the bite.
Maxillofacial surgery may be required if the jawbone is significantly misshapen or misaligned. Jaw surgery is a serious procedure with significant risks and a lengthy, painful recovery period. Wires and screws hold the jaw in place while it heals. Ouch!
If your jaw hurts or you notice unusual wear on your teeth, you should see a dentist right away. To make an appointment with our professional team, please call 043 400 900.