Dr. Sidney M. Craft

Orthodontist located in Houston, TX & The Woodlands, TX

Do you have an open bite that’s prohibiting you from speaking properly or smiling confidently? If so, schedule a visit to fix it with the experts at Dr. Sidney M. Craft in Houston and The Woodlands, Texas. The practice has helped many patients overcome their open bite to achieve a smile that looks great and functions perfectly. To learn more, book an appointment by calling the office nearest you or using the convenient online scheduling tool.

Openbite Q & A

What is an open bite?

An open bite is a type of malocclusion or jaw misalignment where the front upper and lower teeth slant outwards and don’t touch when the mouth is shut.

What causes an open bite?

There are four main conditions that can lead to the development of an open bite:

Chronic sucking of a thumb or pacifier

Sucking any object for an extended period of time strains the alignment of your teeth, which can turn into an open bite.

Tongue thrusting

This is when you push your tongue between your upper and lower front teeth when speaking or swallowing. Chronic tongue thrusting can lead to an open bite as well as gaps between the teeth.

Temporomandibular joint disorder (TMJ/TMD)

Some people that suffer from chronic TMJ or TMD habitually reposition their jaw by using their tongue to push their teeth apart, which can lead to an open bite.

Skeletal problems

Genetic factors can cause your jaws to grow apart from one another instead of parallel to each other, which can cause an open bite to develop.

Why should I correct my open bite?

An open bite can cause a number of aesthetic and dental concerns, such as:

  • Difficulty speaking and eating properly
  • Development of a lisp
  • Increased wear and pressure on the back teeth, sometimes leading to discomfort or fractured molars
  • An aesthetically compromised smile with the front teeth noticeably protruding

It’s easiest to treat open bites when patients are younger, and their adult teeth have yet to fully come in, but the condition is ultimately correctable in patients of any age at the office of Dr. Sidney M. Craft.

How do you treat an open bite?

There are a few different ways to successfully treat an open bite. Dr. Sidney M. Craft suggests a particular method depending on you or your child’s age, whether or not baby teeth are still present, and the severity of the malocclusion.

If your child still has baby teeth, your practitioner might be able to fix their open bite by simply recommending some behavioral changes to stop the action that’s causing the malocclusion, like thumb sucking or tongue thrusting.

If you or your child has an open bite in their adult teeth, your practitioner might recommend using elastic wear. These are a series of rubber bands that are secured to braces on your teeth.

By hooking the rubber bands to particular braces on your upper and lower teeth, they can gradually pull your teeth and jaw back into proper alignment, minimizing or eliminating the open bite.

If you have an open bite that’s interfering with your daily life or oral health, don’t wait any longer to treat it. Schedule an appointment by calling the office of Dr. Sidney M. Craft that is nearest you or book a visit online.