Invisalign is a popular treatment used to fix mild to moderate and sometimes complex orthodontic issues. With the help of comfortable, clear aligners, it can encourage the teeth to move into their correct place. For many patients, Invisalign is the preferred method for correcting dental issues, such as crooked teeth, gaps, cross bites, open bites, and of course, underbites.
How does it fix an underbite? Let’s talk about it.
What is an Underbite?
An underbite refers to a dental condition in which the lower jaw protrudes out further than the upper jaw. While it may not cause any issues right away, it may lead to pain and discomfort over time. Depending on the underbite, it may even be physically noticed and lead a patient to feel very self-conscious.
For the most part, underbites are caused by genetics. Many patients who have an underbite are born with it. However, there are different things that can cause this condition, including childhood behaviors like sucking the thumb, extended use of a pacifier or bottle, and even mouth breathing.
Complications Without Treatment
Underbites may go unaddressed for years with many patients not realizing what exactly it is - or that it can be treated. Without the proper care, though, complications may arise, such as:
- Chronic pain
- Temporomandibular joint disorder
- Mouth breathing
- Cavities and other dental issues
- Sleep apnea
- Speech issues
The list of complications from not treating an underbite can be quite extensive. It can also impact one’s level of self-esteem and confidence, too. This is why seeking treatment is so important.
Dentists and orthodontists approach underbites in various ways depending on the needs of the patient. It is often the cause of the issue and even the age of the patient that helps determine the best approach.
For instance, if caught early while the jaw is still developing, there are steps that can be taken to keep the underbite from forming - and from getting worse. For adults, treatments such as Invisalign can often improve the issue.
How Invisalign can Help Fix an Underbite
Invisalign is a type of orthodontic treatment that uses clear, comfortable aligners that are custom-designed to fit and mold your teeth. Replacing an aligner weekly to every 10 days or so will continually move your teeth in the desired direction. For those with underbites, this means moving the bottom teeth back into a position that falls behind the front teeth.
Underbites range in severity. As a result, the length of treatment they require will be impacted. For minor underbites, the length of treatment can be as little as a few months. More severe underbites may require a year of treatment to correct the condition successfully. Keep in mind that Invisalign may be used in combination with other dental treatments to complete the treatment into an ideal result. For example, we can use minor cosmetic dentistry such as bonding to enhance the final result to the patient's desired smile.
See How Invisalign Can Work For You
Living with an underbite can lead to bigger issues down the road. At Dental Associates of Lodi, we welcome you on your journey to transforming your smile - and your oral health. Using powerful treatments, such as Invisalign, we can successfully fix your underbite and tackle any other dental issues you may face.
Want to see if Invisalign is right for you?