Most people don’t completely understand exactly what crossbite is, at least until you become familiar through diagnosis in your family circle. Essentially, there are 2 kinds of crossbite and they both could potentially lead to jaw discomfort, TMJ (Temporomandibular Joint Dysfunction), and other concerns such as loose teeth and receding gums. Fortunately, the condition is treatable. There are various crossbite correction and treatment alternatives offered and the following will help you gain a better understanding of what can be done.
The clinical definition of a crossbite is an irregular relation of a tooth or several teeth of one arch to the opposing tooth or teeth of the other arch, brought on by variance of tooth position or unusual jaw position.
In laymen’s terms, a crossbite takes place when there is a misalignment of your upper teeth as related to your lower teeth.
Crossbites can be genetic, but they can also be situational. Crossbites that take place in kids can result from the permanent teeth growing in before all the baby teeth have fallen out. The new teeth that come in can’t grow in where they should, which results in misalignment issues.
In most cases, crossbites are the result of genetics. It may be that your parents have passed this down to you if they had issues with their bites.
There are normally two kinds of crossbites; posterior and anterior. A posterior crossbite is when your upper teeth fall inside your lower teeth on one side when you bite down. An anterior crossbite, resembling an underbite, is when your top front teeth fall behind your lower front teeth when you bite down.
Both types can be fixed and the quicker they are corrected, the better.
Untreated crossbites can trigger a variety of health complications, ranging from jaw grinding, cosmetic concerns, the loss of teeth, jaw problems, and receding gum line.
Some patients have reported having headaches brought on by the tension and stress put on the jaw. Additional stress occurs from teeth grinding due to misalignment and, in worst case situations, crossbites can even affect face and jaw growth. These challenges can all be prevented with appropriate treatment alternatives, especially when treated at a young age.
If you or someone in your household is coping with a crossbite, it’s highly recommended that you schedule a visit with your dental expert for a complete assessment. They will determine if a crossbite exists and what treatment is appropriate for your specific case.
It’s the opinion of most dentists that correction should occur as children or teenagers. Adult treatments are also available, however early treatment is considered best. Correction is achieved by orthodontic means, adjusting the teeth or jaw.
Following is a list of typical treatment options offered for crossbite challenges, however isn’t intended as definitive recommendation for patient care. It is a representation of typical treatments offered for the treatment after examination and determination of a course of action.
— Maxillary Expander
— Removable expander
— Surgery in severe cases
Often a combined therapy using expanders and braces is the best course. The expanders are used to create correct spacing between teeth, aligning the bite. These are sometimes removable when correcting adult issues. Each situation is different however, many times requiring their own unique treatment strategy.
In any case, if crossbite is suspected you should consult your dentist to confirm the condition and develop a course of treatment. As stated earlier, left untreated, crossbite can lead to other, larger, health challenges, so schedule the visit as soon as possible.
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