If you have ever been considered for orthodontics, you have probably heard the term “malocclusion”. In fact, malocclusion is likely the primary reason you are even having a discussion about braces. But what is malocclusion exactly? And how does it apply to your specific smile?
Malocclusion essentially means that you have misaligned teeth. While many are born with malocclusion, others suffer from crowding or misalignment over time. Misalignment can develop due to the following:
- Abnormally-shaped teeth
- Lost teeth, or impacted teeth
- Thumb sucking or overuse of a pacifier habit
- Poor fitting dental restorations
- Jaw injury
- Tumor of the mouth or jaw
Regardless of how it occurred, misalignment is more than a cosmetic issue. A crowded, crooked or otherwise misaligned smile can also impact your oral health, your speech and the way you eat.
Types and Classifications of Malocclusion
When it comes to malocclusion, there are different types and classifications depending on which area of your bite is affected and how it is behaving (twisted, protruding, spaced, crowded, etc).
There are three main classifications misalignment issues:
- Class 1 malocclusion: The upper teeth slightly overlap the lower teeth.
- Class 2 malocclusion: A severe overlap of the upper teeth and jaw over the bottom teeth and jaw. Also known as overbite.
- Class 3 malocclusion: The lower teeth and jaw overlap the upper teeth and jaw, causing the lower jaw to protrude forward. Also known as underbite.
Orthodontics is designed to address misalignment issues. At Walton Orthodontics, we have the ability to treat all types of malocclusion. Our office offers the latest braces technology for children, teens and adults. While there is an ideal time to correct misalignment, our orthodontists can straighten your smile at any age. Schedule your consult now!
Suwanee, GA 30024