Since the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved Invisalign, it has become a popular remedy for people with overbite problems. Invisalign consists of clear plastic trays which can stay in a patient’s mouth. You can access several clear aligners on the market, Invisalign being one of the brands. Aligner trays work like braces since they slightly adjust the patient’s teeth for some time to improve spacing and alignment. Usually, the main reason why people use aligners is to correct overbites. So, if you have an overbite problem, Invisalign could be just what you need.

An Overbite Explained

Also known as buckteeth, an overbite is a teeth misalignment. It is largely genetic and occurs when a person’s upper front teeth stick out or protrude beyond the lower front teeth. An overbite is a type of ‘’malocclusion’’. Malocclusion comes from the word ‘’occlusion,’’ meaning the alignment of a person’s teeth. A malocclusion, therefore, refers to a misalignment or deviation from a normal occlusion. Overbites, open bites, underbites, and crossbites are all types of malocclusions.

Malocclusion And Mouth Breathing

Breathing through the mouth regularly is often caused by nasal congestion due to persistent colds or allergies. Mouth breathing could also be a sign of underlying health issues. If not treated, it can cause long-term repercussions to your health. Persistent mouth breathing, especially in children, hinders facial growth and development. Usually, when the mouth is open:

  • It pulls the nose down, forming a slight bump or hook.
  • The jaw joints get jammed.
  • It pulls the chin down and backward.
  • It drags the tongue down from its natural resting position on the top of the mouth.

Breathing through the mouth can cause crowded teeth, a gummy smile, a narrower mouth, a flatter nose, a recessed jawline, and an abnormally long face.

Mouth breathing not only has aesthetic repercussions but is also functional, whereby face and jaw muscles can fail to function correctly. This usually leads to bite dysfunction, the main cause of facial pain, migraines, and headaches.

Symptoms of an Overbite

Overbite problems can affect both adults and children. In most cases, the symptoms are visually self-evident. However, slight overbites are hard to notice. Overbites could lead to the following:

Psychological Conditions

Different mental health problems can arise from the discomfort of malocclusion, as well as the occurrence of an overbite. The possible problems could include reluctance to smile, anxiety, and low self-esteem.

Jaw Problems

Jaw issues arising from an overbite can lead to problems like neck pain, jaw stiffness, earaches, and headaches. In addition, poor positioning of the jaw can lead to pain if an overbite is not treated.

Bad Bites

Your teeth can only function properly if they are correctly aligned. The upper and lower teeth will not bite together correctly if the upper jaw is poorly positioned. This could lead to difficulty speaking and chewing and can cause jaw pain.

How Improper Tongue Position Cause An Overbite

The fact that the positioning of the tongue can create an overbite problem can appear strange. However, the idea is based on a simple concept. The mouth will remain closed, ensuring the lower and upper jaws are in contact when the tongue sits on the roof of the mouth. Once the jaws are in contact, they will often grow forwards and develop well, ensuring the proper bite. However, the mouth will remain open when the tongue sits far from the roof of the mouth. The jaw joints, mainly the lower jaw, will be dragged down and backward when the mouth is open. When the mouth remains open due to the positioning of the tongue, it could make the jaws grow downwards rather than forward. This will ultimately lead to an overbite.

Living With Buckteeth

If you decide to maintain your buckteeth, consider doing several things to help you keep your teeth healthy. This could help you avoid problems that arise because of misalignment. The practices you should consider include the following:

  • Using a mouth guard to protect your teeth when participating in high-impact sports.
  • Using a mouth guard during times of stress or sleep if you are tongue-thrust.
  • Make regular visits to the dentist for check-ups.
  • Practice good oral hygiene.

How Invisalign Works

The beauty of Invisalign is its transparency, and unlike some overbite correction appliances, it does not have bulky hardware. Also, unlike metal braces, Invisalign is much less noticeable in the mouth. This is why most patients find it more comfortable.

Invisalign aligners are removable, custom-made plastic trays that you can wear for 20 to 22 hours daily. You can change the Invisalign weekly or biweekly. The subsequent trays you wear will vary slightly from the previous ones.

The orthodontist adjusts the patient’s trays by subtly increasing the force exerted on the teeth. As the treatment continues, the pressure on the teeth increases gradually, pushing the teeth into the proper alignment. This will correct your bite with time.

Treatment Period

Just like traditional braces, the period your Invisalign takes to work is based on the following:

  • The quantity of work needed to achieve the alignment.
  • How severe is your overbite.
  • Your teeth condition.

The breakdown for the treatment period is as follows:

  • According to experts, you should wear your aligners for six months to two years.
  • If you remove the aligners for a period that exceeds two hours daily, you should be ready to wear them for a more extended. You should only remove your Invisalign during meals and when brushing your teeth, then wear them at night.
  • After Invisalign treatment, you will continue wearing a retainer to ensure your teeth stay in their new and proper. Generally, the retainer gives the jawbone enough time to regain the required bone tissue to hold the teeth in place. Your teeth could return to their initial position without a retainer. In this case, your orthodontist will determine how long you will require a retainer. He/she will also determine the number of hours you will need to wear your retainer daily.

Typically, age is crucial in determining the time it will take for your treatment to work. Mature people do not adapt to treatment quickly because they have fully formed jawbones. However, just as they do in teens and children, aligners can correct mature people’s overbites. The only difference is that in adult people, treatment could take longer.

On the other hand, jawbones in younger individuals are still growing. Teeth movement and realignment can quickly correct a growing jawbone. This often happens during orthodontic treatments like Invisalign and traditional braces.

Invisalign And Rubber Bands

Rubber bands usually exert extra pressure on the teeth to move in a specific direction, thus aiding orthodontic treatment. At times, rubber bands are referred to as elastics when they are used in orthodontia. Elastics are not only for traditional braces but could also come in handy with Invisalign aligners to correct an overbite. Usually, your orthodontist will determine if putting on aligners with elastics will improve or hasten the treatment.

Using a tooth-colored bonding material to attach the rubber bands, your orthodontist could form a latch or button on certain teeth. Typically, buttons are put on the lower molars and upper canines to correct overbites.

Getting Started With Invisalign Treatment

Your dentist or orthodontist will review your dental history during your appointment, perform an oral examination, and take a series of oral X-rays to create a personalized teeth-aligning plan. Then, with the help of digital imaging, they demonstrate how your teeth will shift from their present alignment to their optimum alignment. They also let you know how many sets of aligner trays (and weeks of wear) you'll need for your treatment plan.

During this initial consultation, the dentist will also let you know if your treatment should entail placing small, clear "buttons" on the fronts of some teeth to help your aligners anchor and move over time to produce the best results. Depending on the practitioner giving care, Invisalign can help with the following corrections:

  • Crooked teeth.
  • Crowding.
  • Gaps between the teeth.
  • Overlapping teeth.
  • Mal-positioned or misaligned teeth.

 Invisalign Vs. Braces

Choosing between Invisalign and traditional braces can be challenging because they have merits and demerits. They also differ in cost, appearance, and speed of treatment. The factors that determine whether you should go for braces or Invisalign could be beyond your control, and they include the following:

  • Whether you have dental problems that require correcting.
  • How severe is your overbite is.

Some crucial factors that you should consider when choosing between braces and Invisalign include:

The Period Of Treatment

The period you will require Invisalign versus braces is not conclusive. You could consult your orthodontist for time estimates for each treatment. Usually, Invisalign treatment takes six months to two years. On the other hand, traditional braces treatment takes one to three years. Unfortunately, while Invisalign aligners always need a short treatment period, studies show that they produce less effective improvement. Therefore, Invisalign aligners are the best option for moderate and mild overbites. Traditional braces are, on the other hand, the best for treating severe overbites.

Lifestyle Habits

Invisalign requires a specific daily routine that most patients deem inconvenient. Unlike traditional braces, you must remove aligners before eating because they easily stain. Fortunately, this helps you maintain your oral hygiene because it is easier to clean your teeth daily by removing aligners rather than cleaning around braces. Traditional braces could also hinder you from enjoying foods that stick in their hardware, like nuts, popcorn, and gum.

Invisalign is not your best option if you are likely to forget to wear them, remove them when necessary, or risk losing them. For example, some patients leave their clear plastic trays in the hot sun. Sometimes, the aligners find their way into the washing machine.

Invisalign can only work if you wear the trays as the dentist instructs you and store them well. This is why most patients opt for traditional braces that stay in your mouth throughout since they are hard to lose.

Treatment Cost

The price for Invisalign aligners is also a significant factor. The cost of Invisalign usually ranges from $3,000 to $7,000. On the other hand, braces are at times cheaper than Invisalign. However, dental insurance usually fully or partially covers both treatments. Additionally, the orthodontist you choose and your geographic area are also factors that will determine the price of both treatments.

Aesthetics / Appearance

Invisalign aligners could be your best option if you are concerned about aesthetics since they are transparent on your teeth. This is the reason why most adults prefer them. On the other hand, braces are not your best option if wearing them will make you self-conscious, making you hide your mouth or smile less. However, lingual braces and less-obstructive ceramic braces could be your best aesthetic option.

Ways To Save On Invisalign

Most people view orthodontics as an aesthetic treatment, but this is not the case. Generally, it is hard to keep crooked teeth clean. This could expose you to the danger of tooth decay and periodontal diseases and can lead to jaw pain. In addition, individuals not confident in their smiles could also feel intimidated, especially in professional and social situations.

However, several programs and strategies are available to reduce the cost of Invisalign treatment or spread it over time. Typically, you should consider the following if you are looking for ways to save on Invisalign:

Medicaid And Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP)

Teens and kids who receive government support for insurance could be eligible for help to meet the expense of Invisalign or braces. In addition, Invisalign could be covered if your child’s requirement for orthodontics is clearly preventing their overall health. Consult your insurance representative and your dentist to raise a case and have your child’s needs covered.

No-interest Credit Card

A credit card could act as a way to finance your Invisalign if appropriately used. For example, if you make regular payments and pay off the amount before the introductory rate ends, you could be eligible for a credit card with a zero percent APR introductory rate. Essentially, you will come up with a payment plan without having to pay more.

However, you need to be careful with credit cards that have a deferred interest rate. Unlike no-interest cards, which are truly zero percent APR, a deferred interest rate begins collecting interest immediately you have a balance. You will not pay that interest if you clear the whole balance within the promotional period. If you have an outstanding balance at the end of the promotional period, they will add the interest rate to what you owe.

Only use credit cards as a last resort and use them carefully because they can become costly if used incorrectly.

Dental Schools

Consult widely to find out if there are dental schools in your locality that could offer Invisalign services at a lower rate. You would be accepting to let a dental student learn by doing your dental work if you sign up for treatment from a dental school. A good dental school always ensures that a board-certified dentist supervises the student offering your services.

Payment Plan

Most dentists create monthly payment plans so that patients do not have to pay their entire bill at once. Therefore, when you inquire about the cost of your orthodontic work from your dentist, you also need to ask about any payment plans their office provides.

The Pros of Invisalign

  • Beauty/aesthetics — This is a popular justification for selecting Invisalign. Compared to the wires and brackets associated with conventional braces, these clear aligners are far less noticeable.
  • You can get remove them whenever you like — If necessary, you can manually take the aligner out of your mouth.
  • Brushing your teeth is simple — You can simply clean and floss your teeth while wearing an aligner because there are no wires or brackets to get in the way. This can also help your periodontal health.
  • Fewer possible Complications — Many people with traditional braces have instances of a bracket coming off or a wire snapping, calling for an urgent trip to the dentist.

The Cons Of Aligners

  • Less successful with complex problems — Invisalign works better for patients whose teeth only need specific types of movement. For complicated issues, your doctor might advise a different course of action. Additionally, Invisalign might not be the best choice if you have bridgework on some teeth.
  • Needs adherence — You must use Invisalign for 20 to 22 hours every day to its full benefits. It might not be the best option if you believe you will be tempted to sneak them out more frequently.
  • When eating or drinking, you must remove the Invisalign — You must remove aligners before eating or drinking. Food or drink can get into them if you don't. For example, bacteria grow along the teeth or gum line, which can lead to cavities. In addition, liquid can seep through them and stain the aligners and teeth.
  • Food restrictions — When you remove the aligner, you could get tooth soreness. This could restrict your food options. Hard meals, in particular, should be avoided.

Other Treatment For Overbite Correction

Several other treatments are available to treat overbite issues, including the following:

  • Removing some teeth to allow the remaining teeth to have more room, especially in adults.
  • Undergoing surgery to correct jaw alignment.
  • Use of retainers in children to keep the teeth in alignment after braces.
  • Removal of permanent teeth or baby teeth to make room for adult teeth in children.
  • Use of braces in children to gradually move the teeth into the proper alignment.
  • Use of palate expanders or growth modification devices in children, used during growth spurts to reposition the jaw.

Find a Hawthorne Dentist Near Me

Invisalign, or clear aligner orthodontics, is an excellent alternative for patients who wish to straighten their teeth without unattractive metal showing. If you need quality Invisalign in Hawthorne, we invite you to contact Ganji Dental. Call us at 310-643-8045 to speak to one of our dentists.