Do Clear Aligners Work for an Overjet?
If you have an overbite, you’re most probably looking for ways to correct your smile. The good news is that there are ways to quickly fix your overjet, including braces. However, they are not your only option.
Your orthodontist may suggest that you wear clear aligners instead. Yes, clear aligners, such as Spark Aligners, can fix your overbite. But the treatment is not for everyone. It all depends on the severity of the overbite, among other factors.
Do You Have an Overbite?
Before you get clear aligners, your orthodontist will take a look at your teeth. Are they properly aligned, or do you need treatment to correct your bite? Overjet is one of the terms you could encounter after an orthodontic assessment. Some people refer to it as “buck teeth.” But orthodontists use overjet to describe the upper teeth extending past the lower teeth.
Having an overjet does not always mean you require treatment. It can still be categorised as normal. However, some cases, especially those that are considered severe, should be corrected. The classification is based on how far the top teeth overlap with the lower teeth.
An overbite is often confused with an overjet. They are quite distinct and should not be used interchangeably. An overjet of measurement of the amount of protrusion of the upper front teeth past the lower front teeth in a horizontal direction. An overbite is the vertical overlap of the upper front teeth over the lower front teeth.
In cases where the overbite is deep, you may not see the lower front teeth when a patient bites together because the upper front teeth cover them. The reverse is where the overbite is reduced or even when there is an open bite. In open bite cases, there is no coverage of the lower front teeth by the upper front teeth when a patient bites together.
If you’re wondering why you have an overjet, it’s mostly caused by hereditary factors. Your jaw’s shape can affect your teeth placement, which can result in an overjet. The most common reason is that the lower jaw is smaller than the upper jaw. It results in the lower teeth resting behind the upper teeth. This positioning causes the upper teeth to move downwards as they continue to wear gradually.
Overcrowding is also a common cause, as well as missing teeth in the lower jaw. Many people who have an overjet used to suck their thumbs when they were younger. Such a habit, along with pacifier use and extended milk bottle use, can also increase the likelihood of developing an overbite. The jaw is still growing during that time, which influences how the teeth will grow.
Can You Wear Clear Aligners for Overbite Correction?
As mentioned at the beginning of this post, clear aligners can correct an overjet. You should wear the aligners for 22 hours every day.
A significant benefit of wearing clear aligners for overjets is that you can remove them whenever you’re eating. This advantage extends to brushing and flossing since you can easily clean your teeth without any hurdles. With braces, cleaning teeth is often more complicated because you have to make sure your toothbrush and floss reach your teeth even with the wires around them.
Clear aligners are comfortable and barely visible. However, they may not be for you if you have a severe overbite. These aligners are only for correcting simple to moderate cases because they do not give constant and consistent pressure for worse overbites.
Before deciding to get aligners, your teeth will be evaluated, and you can even see a preview of how your smile will look once you’re done with the treatment.
To make sure that you get the best possible results, it is helpful if you can have your teeth fixed first. If there are any teeth with decay or chips in your teeth, you must get these fixed first by your General Dental Practitioner.
Why Should You Fix an Overbite?
The two main reasons for correcting an overjet (or any bite issue for that matter) are cosmetic and non-cosmetic. You want your teeth to look great, so you can smile and talk without hiding them. It gives you a confidence boost knowing that your teeth are straight.
Because having an overjet means your top teeth overlap with the lower ones, you can feel a bit self-conscious when smiling, especially when you’re having your pictures taken. Therefore, cosmetic benefits also lead to feeling more confident about yourself and your smile.
The non-cosmetic benefits, however, should be the main drive for getting your teeth fixed. For example in cases where people have deep overbites tooth wear can occur. This is because your upper and lower teeth will constantly touch whenever you open and close your mouth. You may not notice it, but your teeth will get shorter and thinner over time. They can eventually lead to chipping and even tooth loss.
It’s also important to remember that an overjet is a dental issue that can cause different physical problems. You can have trouble eating and chewing. It may also be difficult for you to speak properly because you could have a lisp.
How Do Clear Aligners Work to Help Fix Your Teeth?
For the clear aligners to work, you should follow your dentist’s rules. But don’t worry; they are not strict at all. Just like with wearing braces, you have to make sure that you brush your teeth at least twice a day and floss once a day. Some people even clean their teeth each time they eat to ensure that nothing gets stuck between the wires and gaps of the teeth.
More importantly, you have to be committed to wearing your clear aligners as instructed by your orthodontist. While you’re free to remove your aligners, you should not keep them out of your mouth unless you’re eating and brushing your teeth. In some instances, you may feel that you need to remove them, such as during social situations or playing sports. However, you need to remember that aligners only work when they are in your mouth. By removing them, you also remove the force on your teeth, which means they will not move to their correct position.
Clear aligners are custom-made teeth appliances, which are removable and almost invisible. They should be worn for most of the day. You will then switch to the next phase or set it every two to four weeks.
The set of clear aligners are programmed in sequence. You will replace your current aligners on schedule so that the treatment effectively moves your teeth into place. Your Oasis Orthodontics professional will regularly supervise and monitor your progress to ensure that your teeth are moving to their desired position.
Clear Aligners vs Other Treatment Options
Clear aligners are an excellent treatment, but they may not be the right treatment for you. Your orthodontist will tell you if you are a good candidate for the aligners. However, if you’re not, don’t worry since you have other options, which include:
- Braces are the most common solution. If braces and not clear aligners are recommended for you, it’s most likely because your bite is classified as severe.
- Extractions mean that you will have one or more teeth removed. This method is often suggested for those with a more complicated bite. Extractions allow teeth to move because there will be more space in the mouth. An X-ray of your teeth and jaw may be necessary.
- Surgery is the last resort most of the time. If your upper jaw protrudes so much farther than normal over your lower jaw, no amount of teeth movement through dental appliances can fix the condition. This skeletal irregularity can only be corrected through surgery, but it’s typically only performed on adults.
Are you wondering if clear aligners are right for you? Schedule a visit to meet with our friendly dental professionals. We will assess you so that you immediately know if clear aligners, such as Spark Aligners, are suitable for your overbite.