Malocclusion: Common Causes and Treatment Options

Dentist showing the malocclusion to his patientMalocclusion of the teeth is a dental problem that affects teeth alignment. If left untreated, malocclusion may lead to complications.

With malocclusion, teeth may not be able to perform their normal functions. Speech may also be affected.

Different oral problems may be classified as malocclusion, but one of the most common involves crowded or crooked teeth. Some of the treatments a dental professional may used to correct this are the following:

  • Fitting and wearing of braces
  • One or several teeth may be removed if the problem is overcrowding
  • In some instances, reshaping the teeth may help
  • Your dentist may also recommend capping and bonding
  • Some cases require a plate and/or wires for jawbone stabilisation
  • For more severe cases, surgery may be included in the treatment

There are several reasons behind malocclusion, but most cases are the product of heredity. There are some exceptions, though, such as:

  • Continued and frequent use of a pacifier when the child is older than two years
  • Mouth or jaw tumours
  • Bottle feeding long after the recommended age
  • Thumb-sucking
  • Injury affecting the mouth area
  • Cleft lip & palate
  • Wearing crowns, braces or dental fillings that do not fit properly
  • Bad dental hygiene that leads to tooth decay or improper fit of dental appliances

Most cases of malocclusion fall under Class 1, which means the upper teeth slightly overlap the lower teeth and the bite is still normal. Most of these cases may be corrected with orthodontic treatments in Croydon or elsewhere.

Retrognathism or retrognathia is a condition in which the overbite is severe; the upper jaw and teeth have a pronounced overlap of the lower ones. These cases fall under Class 2. The opposite condition, called prognathism, means the lower teeth and jaw protrude to overlap the upper teeth and jaw. This is Class 3.

Only dental professionals can correct malocclusion. See your dentist or orthodontist today if you have malocclusion and talk to them about possible treatment options.