What Is an Overbite and How Can It Be Fixed?

Posted On: June 20, 2024

An overbite is a specific type of malocclusion, where the upper teeth significantly overlap the lower teeth. Malocclusions are misalignments between the upper and lower teeth. Overbites can be hereditary or develop due to prolonged habits such as pacifier use, bottle-feeding, or excessive thumb sucking. They often result from overcrowded teeth or structural issues in the jaw. 

Different types of overbite

Overbites are a subset of malocclusions, which refer to misalignments of the jaw. Specifically, there are two main categories of malocclusion that fall under the classification of overbite:

  1. Class 1 Malocclusion (neutrocclusion)- This is the most common type of misalignment where the upper teeth go in front of the lower teeth. There is still a normal bite occurring with a class 1 malocclusion.
  2. Class 2 Malocclusion (distocclusion)- When the upper jaw and teeth more severely overlap the lower teeth and jaw. The term “buck teeth” or “overjet” is often associated with this type of bite issue.

What does the term “overjet” mean?





Many people hear the term overjet and confuse it with an overbite. Although they are related, they are not the same thing. An overjet is the distance that the top teeth are sitting in front of the lower teeth. For example, a normal overjet is three millimeters. People with a severe overjet may have a measurement of up to ten milometers!

To learn more about the different types of malocclusion, click here.

Why it’s important to correct an overbite

Correcting an overbite is more than just changing the physical appearance of a someone’s smile. This can improve a person’s overall health and well-being. Depending on the severity of the malocclusion, overbites can lead to:

  • Jaw Pain
  • Severe headaches
  • Tooth decay
  • Tooth wear and damage
  • Difficulty chewing
  • Sleep apnea

How does an Orthodontist fix an overbite?

Early detection of an overbite, before the jaw has fully developed, typically leads to easier treatment. While traditional braces and rubber bands are the most common approach, severe cases may require jaw surgery. The choice of treatment depends on the overbite’s severity and the patient’s age.   At Jones Orthodontics, we are specialized in treating overbites and all types of malocclusions. Schedule a free consultation today learn how we can help you achieve a more comfortable and confident smile! Our team