When you hear the word “malocclusion” from a dentist, most people don’t have a clue what it means. Think crooked teeth or a “bad bite.” The term “occlusion” refers to how the teeth come together. “Mal” means a faulty bite. Many people relate malocclusion with an overbite or underbite. Unfortunately, most children and adults have some form of malocclusion.
Malocclusion is usually inherited, but misalignment can start early — such as using a pacifier after age three, prolonged bottle feeding or thumb sucking in early childhood. An orthodontic consultation is recommended as early as age seven to check your child’s bite.
Braces are usually easier for children and teens because their jaws are still developing and teeth are easier to manipulate. But you’re never too old for orthodontic treatment to correct a bite condition. Braces and orthodontics have significantly improved over the years.
Our team of dentists and clinicians at Oregon Dental will do a complete smile analysis. Your teeth are examined and dental x-rays taken to determine how your teeth, or your child’s, are aligned and the degree of severity. We’ll go over options such as traditional braces, invisible braces (Invisalign), all ceramic crowns and veneers and tooth color restoration as needed.