How you can fix an overbite with aligners
A question we’re often asked is can clear aligners fix or improve an overbite? The simple answer is yes, but first you need to know why you should fix an overbite and what the process consists of.
What is an overbite?
An overbite is when your upper teeth have moved and hide your lower teeth when you bite down. It causes a literal overbite, causing overlapping of the lower teeth by the upper.
This can happen for several reasons, the most common being that your lower jaw is a little smaller than your upper jaw. The lower teeth rest behind the upper, which move downwards as your teeth gradually wear. Those with an overbite tend to show a bit more gum on their upper teeth, with the upper front teeth slightly lower down than their neighbours (the upper side teeth/canines). According to food writer and historian Bee Wilson, there’s even an evolutionary argument that we didn’t start developing overbites until eating with a knife and fork became commonplace.
Why should you fix an overbite?
- The cosmetic reasons
As shown in the picture above (scroll down to see the before/after below), having an overbite means that when you smile your bottom teeth are hidden by your top ones. When the top teeth overlap the lower ones, some feel self-conscious when smiling or hate to have their pictures taken.
- The non cosmetic reason
Having an overbite increases your chances of tooth wear, meaning your teeth touch each other constantly when you open and close your mouth which in the long term means they can get short and thinner.
How can an overbite be fixed with aligners?
There are two things that could be fixed:
- Moving your upper teeth back to where they should be: upwards
- Moving your lower teeth down to where they should be: downwards
This can be done using clear aligners, a series of custom made removable braces that are worn most of the day, removed to eat and brush your teeth, and switched to the next one every 2 to 4 weeks.
The aligners intercept the teeth, moving them upwards and moving the gum at the same time, so the proportions stay the same. It doesn’t move the teeth into the gum, the teeth and gum are remodelled as the teeth move upwards.
The aligners are then programmed in sequence to move the teeth into place and your supervising dentist will monitor the progress to make sure the teeth move to the desired position.
Before you decide to order your aligners, you’ll be able to see a preview of how your smile will look at the end of the treatment on the Straight Teeth Direct™ app, available for both iPhone and Android. To get the best possible results at the end of the treatment, you may need to have your worn down teeth edges repaired and improved, as well as your upper teeth cosmetically contoured to improve their symmetry.
Find out if your overbite could be fixed with invisible aligners at home. The first step is to send your teeth photos for a free and quick e-consultation, then we’ll send you your SmileBox – it’s so much easier than booking an appointment and going to the orthodontists in person.