It’s easy to think that Invisalign is all about aesthetics. The treatment is designed to be much more image-friendly than braces, and it’s ideal for making cosmetic changes to the alignment of the teeth to create a stunning smile. But fortunately for patients with malocclusion (a crooked bite), Invisalign is often a viable solution as well. How does this work? Can Invisalign help fix your bite? You’ll find the answers to these questions and more in today’s blog.
But First, What Exactly is Malocclusion?
“Malocclusion” refers to a misaligned bite where the upper and lower teeth do not come together properly. Orthodontists will often refer to them as “Class 1” or “Class 2” and so on, but you probably know the different types of malocclusions by their common names: overbite, underbite, open bite, and crossbite.
With an overbite, the upper teeth stick out too far in front of the bottom teeth. The opposite is true with an underbite, where the lower teeth are too far forward. For open bites, the front teeth do not touch even when the mouth is closed, and a crossbite refers to when the rows of teeth are misaligned side-to-side.
In addition to negatively affecting the appearance of the smile, these bad bites can also accelerate enamel wear and lead to jaw pain and headaches. That’s because they can place excess strain and pressure on the jaw joint, forcing the nearby muscles to overwork and tire.
How Invisalign Can Help
Because Invisalign is able to shift all of the teeth, a highly trained orthodontist can use the aligners to correct the entire bite in addition to individual pearly whites. The bite can be slowly but surely lined up, which will not only give the smile a more attractive and balanced appearance, but this will also allow the jaw muscles to relax while the mouth is closed or chewing. This can put a quick stop to chronic jaw pain and headaches as well as drastically lower a patient’s chances of experiencing broken/worn down teeth over time.
Is Invisalign Right For You?
While Invisalign can help many patients with malocclusion, for those with particularly complicated cases, traditional braces might be a better solution. It all depends on a patient’s situation. Extreme malocclusion can sometimes call for corrective surgery as well, but thankfully, this is only necessary for a minority of patients.
So, should you get Invisalign for your “misbehaving” bite? Fortunately, you don’t have to make this decision on your own. By visiting a board-certified orthodontist, you’ll allow them to examine your mouth and discuss your treatment options in detail so you can make a confident choice. If it turns out that Invisalign would be a good fit, then you can look forward to a discreet and comfortable treatment that will result in a healthy and functional smile you’ll enjoy for decades to come.
About the Author
Dr. Jeffrey Shirck is a board-certified, award-winning orthodontist who has helped countless children and adults in the Columbus area achieve the smiles of their dreams with Invisalign. If you or your child have an overbite, underbite, open bite, or crossbite, he invites you to schedule a FREE in-person consultation at Shirck Orthodontics, during which he’ll take a digital impression of the teeth and show you what they will look like after undergoing Invisalign. To set up this appointment, just click here.