What Is Overbite & Overjet? Can Clear Aligners Help Fix It?

If your upper teeth sit too far forward, you may have an overbite or overjet. Do you notice challenges with regular mouth functions, like speaking, chewing, or biting? You long for an ideal smile, but an overbite gets in the way of that. Can you correct this issue with clear aligners? 

At Dental House, we offer Invisalign at our Saskatoon dental office. Clear aligners can transform your smile while looking barely noticeable on your teeth. We’re going to explain what an overbite or overjet is and how Invisalign can help correct it:

Overbite vs. Overjet

Overbites and overjets are commonly confused, but there are a few differences between them. We’re going to clear up the matter:

An overbite (or deep bite) describes when the upper front teeth extend too far past the bottom teeth. As a result, the lower teeth rest behind the upper teeth. 

Most people have a mild overbite; it’s normal for the bottom teeth to rest slightly behind the upper front teeth. However, it becomes an issue when a greater percentage of the upper front teeth extend past the bottom ones (when at least 30% of a person’s lower incisors are covered by the top teeth). The vertical nature of an overbite leads to damaged teeth and gum tissue. 

On the other hand, overjet (commonly called buck teeth) describes when the upper teeth protrude past the bottom teeth at an angle. Significant horizontal overlap can lead to teeth hitting each other as you chew, creating wear and tear on the teeth. It may be difficult for patients to close their lips completely.

An overbite is vertical (which means the teeth remain downward), but an overjet is horizontal, causing the teeth to protrude at an angle. For visual reference, see this article that illustrates the differences between these conditions.

What Causes Overbite & Overjet?

Wondering what causes these dental issues? Often, they develop due to childhood habits. For example: 

  • A tongue-thrusting habit (when the tongue pushes against the back of the upper front teeth)
  • Prolonged time spent sucking on objects (usually a pacifier or thumb sucking)
  • Nail-biting

When the adult teeth begin to grow in, the above habits can alter the way they’re formed. Genetic factors also play a role here; if your lower jaw is smaller than the upper jaw, it results in the lower teeth resting further behind the upper ones.

If you grind your teeth, you may be at risk of developing an overbite. Gum disease is another risk factor. The disease can gradually wear down the bone structure and cause these issues to develop.

How an Overbite Affects Your Upper Jaw & Lower Teeth

When teeth overlap, they’re more difficult to clean. This can lead to dental problems like cavities, inflamed gum tissue (which can increase your risk of developing gum disease), or root canal infections. 

An overbite can lead to pain in your upper jawbone and lower jawbone. The tension causes migraines for some patients, along with soreness when chewing or speaking. 

Both of these conditions can create issues with the aesthetic of your smile. When the upper teeth sit slightly lower, it causes them to look longer than the upper side teeth. 

Can Invisalign Help?

If you want to fix an overbite, clear aligners are an effective way to go about it. With clear aligners, you can correct issues like:

  • Underbite
  • Overbite
  • Gaps between teeth
  • Crowded teeth
  • Rotated teeth
  • Crossbite

Clear aligners apply gradual pressure to progressively shift your teeth. Due to your custom treatment plan, your clear aligners will need to be adjusted approximately every two weeks. 

Not every patient is the right candidate for Invisalign. In some cases, clear aligners alone aren’t enough to correct an overbite or overjet. Surgery may be required. We suggest speaking to your dentist to determine the best treatment for your smile.

Book Your Consultation Today

Are you a good candidate for Invisalign treatment? At Dental House, we offer Invisalign in Saskatoon. Our dentists can examine your teeth to determine how best to correct your overbite. 

We’ll create a custom treatment plan to address any concerns with your smile. Once your teeth are in their corrected positions, you can enjoy a more symmetrical smile, less jaw pain, and better oral health overall.

Ready to create a whole new smile with clear aligners? To book your consultation, contact us today!