If you experience painful or uncomfortable chewing, speech problems, or over-frequent biting of your cheeks or tongue, you may have a misaligned bite. In addition, having an overbite, underbite, crowded teeth, or other visible misalignment of the teeth is also a strong indicator that bite stabilization is needed. There are many procedures used to stabilize your bite alignment, and the method used will depend on the reason you experience misalignment in the first place.
Malocclusion of the Teeth
The causes are varied, though they are generally related to the alignment of the teeth or the jaw joint. A few of these causes include:
- Inherited traits, including malformed jaws or an undersized mouth
- Teeth have grown in impacted or crooked
- Injuries to the jaw or teeth
- Tumors around the jaw joint
- Damage or misalignment in the jaw joint, known as TMJ disorder
A misaligned bite, known medically as a malocclusion of the teeth, is often uncomfortable and can make you self-conscious about the appearance of your smile. However, it can also lead to more serious issues as it places extra strain on the teeth and jaws, causing muscle pain and potentially fractured teeth. It can also make it more difficult to practice proper tooth hygiene, which naturally leads to tooth decay and gum disease.
There are a variety of bite stabilization treatments available depending on the type of malocclusion you experience. Some of the more common treatments are:
- Braces and other oral appliances: In cases where the teeth have simply grown in crooked, braces can help straighten them out. At Lynn Dental, we offer a couple options, including Invisalign and Fast Braces technology. These both help alleviate some of the inconvenience and self-consciousness that often accompany the use of corrective oral appliances.
- Reshaping teeth: Painless procedures to reshape or bond teeth can help teeth line up properly. These use a special resin that bonds directly to the tooth and can be shaped as needed. The resin is then allowed to cure, either on its own or with a high-intensity light. Generally, bonding requires no anesthetic.
- TMJ treatments: If the misaligned bite is due to TMJ disorder, then various treatments can help. Several self-care treatments can help the issue. These include avoiding hard foods, using a heat pad, sleeping on your back, and avoiding teeth-clenching. The treatments we offer include oral appliances to help ease the joint and—in certain extreme cases—oral surgery.
The right treatment should be determined in consultation with your dentist. In most cases, bite stabilization treatments are painless and minimally invasive, so there is no reason to fear getting treatment. While the treatment process may be lengthy in some cases, such as when oral appliances are required, the benefits outweigh the inconvenience.
At Lynn Dental Care, we offer the latest technologies available in order to provide you with the most comfortable treatment possible. Each of our patients is treated with careful attention to his or her specific needs. Dr. Lynn and his staff are prepared to help you keep your smile healthy and bright. For an appointment or more information, contact us today.