Overlapping Teeth – Causes, Issues and Treatment Options
Overlapping teeth also commonly known as crooked teeth is a dental alignment condition where teeth extend over one another. Some people have slightly overlapped teeth which are often ignored. However, having several overlapping teeth due to dental crowding can be a serious dental issue and needs immediate attention. Apart from poor aesthetics resulting in a crooked smile, overlapping can also cause severe problems in performing basic functions like biting and chewing. Let’s take a closer look at the causes and complications caused by overlapping teeth and how to fix overlapped teeth.
Overlapping Teeth Causes:
Overlapped teeth are primarily a result of genetics along with early childhood habits. Prolonged use of pacifiers or bottles beyond the age of 3 years can cause anomalies in the dental structure resulting in crooked teeth. In addition to this, thumb-sucking and hereditary factors are also major contributing factors to this malocclusion.
Apart from early childhood habits and genetic reasons, other overlapping teeth causes are:
- Injuries causing jaw misalignment
- Cleft lip and palate problems
- Improperly set crowns and dental fillings
- Lack of space in the jaw bone
- Abnormally shaped teeth
- Wisdom teeth
- Gingivitis or mouth tumour
Issues caused by overlapping teeth:
Overlapping teeth can cause great difficulty in biting and chewing food. In addition to this, they can also result in other misalignment conditions like overbites, underbites, crossbites, and open bites. Crooked teeth can cause great difficulty in teeth maintenance and create problems in flossing and brushing. This improper maintenance of teeth can result in gum diseases such as gingivitis and result in gum inflammation, bleeding, and infection.
Overlapping teeth can also cause severe pain in gums, and teeth and result in headaches. While the physical aspects of overlapped teeth are often discussed widely, they can also impact the mental condition and confidence of an individual. Overlapping front teeth often cause hindrance in expressing themselves and smiling freely.
Overlapping teeth treatment:
Once you have decided to undergo overlapping teeth treatment, your next step should be to decide which treatment method to go for. Some of the common treatment methods for overlapping teeth are:
Dental Veneers are a popular option for mild teeth misalignments. These are usually not recommended for medium to severe overlapping teeth. Veneers are custom-made shells that are placed over your teeth to provide alignment. Veneers don’t align your teeth or jaw. There are placed on your teeth just to improve aesthetics. Because of their limited efficiency, only patients with slightly misaligned teeth are recommended veneers
Braces are one of the most popular forms of teeth alignment treatment. They have proven their efficacy for several decades and have provided teeth alignment solutions to millions of patients worldwide. Metal braces are the most common type of braces and are placed firmly over the teeth and provide alignment by pushing the teeth in the desired direction. Braces come with several restrictions and might be an uncomfortable experience for many. This is why people are moving towards invisible braces or aligners.
Aligners or invisible braces are becoming the go-to solution for all teeth alignment solutions. One of the biggest advantages of aligners is that they are custom-made as per patients’ teeth size and treatment requirements. They are customizable, pain-free, and nearly invisible adding to the aesthetic value. Aligners are plastic moulds placed on teeth to provide alignment by pushing them in the desired direction. Another advantage of using invisible aligners is that they can be removed anytime you wish. This is a feature that’s not available in other treatment methods. Easy removability means that the patients won’t have any dietary restrictions and can clean and maintain them easily.
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