If you’re like most people, you probably assume that crooked teeth or an improper bite must be the result of genetics. While crooked teeth and improper bites can have roots in genetics, it’s not the only reason a person’s teeth might be twisted, crooked, or out of alignment. Plenty of external factors can influence improper jaw alignment aside from genetics, causing an overbite, under bite, and/or crossbite.

It’s entirely possible for children to have teeth, gums, and jaws that are very dissimilar to their parents’. Sometimes, the child’s mouth or jaw is too small for all of the adult teeth to fit. The upper and lower jaws can also be different sizes, preventing them from lining up properly. In cases with jaws of different sizes, a larger upper jaw can result in an overbite while a larger lower jaw can result in an under bite.  A crossbite occurs when one tooth or several upper teeth are improperly aligned and fall inside of the lower teeth.

Aside from genetics, crooked teeth and improper bites could be a result of other oral conditions. One such condition is gum disease, which in severe cases can expose the roots of the teeth, allowing them to shift or twist without the gum tissue there to provide necessary support. Tumors in the mouth can also disrupt jaw alignment and result in an improper bite. Even your child’s every day habits can influence their bite. Grinding teeth and clenching the jaws together creates repeated pressure, which may result in forming an improper bite. Other factors that can also impact the alignment of teeth and jaws include things like thumb-sucking, prolonged used of a pacifier or bottle, and even tongue thrusting, where the child is constantly pushing their tongue against their teeth.

No matter what the cause of your child’s (or even your own) crooked teeth or improper bite, we offer a variety of treatment options to create a beautiful smile. To set up your free orthodontic consultation appointment, including x-rays, give us a call at 843.903.3300!



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