A crossbite is a condition (malocclusion) that occurs when the top teeth and bottom teeth do not come together or bite in the correct position. This type of misalignment means that some of the bottom teeth are located outside the upper teeth when your jaw is closed or some of the top teeth are positioned inside the bottom teeth. The crossbite can occur in the front of the mouth (anterior) or the sides and back of the mouth (posterior).

Crossbites and underbites are often confused; however, it is a completely different type of misalignment and requires different treatment. In a crossbite, the teeth slant slightly forward, but not the entire jaw.

Types of Crossbites

There are two types of crossbites, which are anterior and posterior.

Anterior crossbite: An anterior crossbite is an occlusion that occurs in the upper anterior (front) teeth (incisors and canines) with the lower anterior teeth. When this happens, some or all of the upper anterior teeth are behind the lower anterior teeth. In more severe cases, the lower teeth may completely hide the upper front teeth.

Posterior crossbite: A posterior crossbite is also a malocclusion; however, it is the opposite of an anterior crossbite. This means that the top back teeth sit inside the bottom back teeth.

What Causes a Crossbite?

There are different contributing factors that can cause a crossbite, such as skeletal or dental issues. For instance, genetic factors would be classified as a skeletal issue. An example of a dental issue would be an abnormal tooth eruption. However, there are also other outside factors that can cause a crossbite, such as:

  • Excessive use of pacifier or thumb sucking as a child
  • Tongue thrusting (pushing the tongue forward against the front teeth when swallowing)
  • Mouth breathing
  • Delayed eruption of adult teeth

Are Crossbites Bad?

If left untreated, crossbites can negatively affect your oral health and overall health in the long run. For example, crossbites can lead to teeth grinding, irregular wearing of the enamel, loss of teeth, headaches, and muscle tension to the jaw. In more severe cases, it can impact the development of the jaw and facial structure, especially for children. Untreated crossbites can also result in speech impediments, an unbalanced facial structure, and more.

To avoid any of these issues from occurring, it is important to seek treatment from an experienced orthodontist who specializes in crossbites. At Rawle Orthodontics, our team prides ourselves in providing the best treatment for patients who have crossbites. We offer a wide range of highly effective treatment methods that you can count on. Contact our team today to schedule a consultation!

How Are Crossbites Treated?

Crossbites are generally treated with braces, Invisalign, or special retainers. However, for more severe cases, jaw surgery may be necessary. It is best to consult with an orthodontist to determine the best treatment route for you. Feel free to contact us to get the treatment you need to achieve a beautiful, healthy smile!

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