Hey, my name is Shelly Katalgo. My love for sedation dentistry started in high school. My best friend had a severe fear of going to the dentist and I wanted to help her feel better about it. Although I always enjoyed my dental visits, I felt bad that she struggled so much with going to hers. My parents taught me about sedation dentistry and I instantly dreamed of becoming a dental professional. I wanted to help kids like my friend stay fear free throughout their appointments by using gentle techniques and professional medications. Although I opted to follow a different career path, my passion for dentistry remained throughout the years. I will update my site with developments in this industry as soon as they are reported. I will also discuss the benefits of sedation dentistry in detail. Thanks for visiting. I hope you come back soon.
What's the problem with an open bite? It can't be that much of an inconvenience, since your mouth is bound to naturally be open much of the time anyway. But the apex of each molar should come into contact with its opposing tooth when your mouth is closed. When this doesn't happen, you have an abnormal bite pattern, which can lead to discomfort when chewing, speech problems, and an acceleration of the decline of your teeth. A posterior open bite is when your molars don't come into contact with each other, and this can be particularly problematic.
The Importance of Your Molars
Your molars do the heavy lifting when it comes to the mastication (chewing) of your food. These are the workhorses of your mouth, and a posterior open bite prevents them from properly performing their duties. A minor posterior open bite may not require any treatment, as the issue might be so minimal that in your dentist's professional opinion, the proximity of your molars to each other when your mouth is closed won't cause other issues to develop. But, of course, not all posterior open bites will be minor.
When intervention is needed, your dentist will explore all the possible options. When your open bite has resulted in your molars moving out of position, dental braces can be used to realign them. While that corrects the improper movement of your molars, it won't necessarily correct the open bite itself. Sometimes it's necessary to increase the vertical dimensions of your affected molars.
In some cases, a dentist can actually increase the height of the applicable molars with composite bonding, which adds a type of dental cement to each individual tooth, basically increasing its height. Braces and composite bonding can correct a moderate posterior open bite, but severe cases require another approach.
Orthognathic surgery is the proper classification for corrective jaw surgery, and this can be the only option in cases of a severe posterior open bite. The surgeon makes an opening in your gums to access the bone. An incision is then made in the bone, making it mobile, and allowing the surgeon to reposition it. The bone is then held in its new position using a plate or screws. It might sound intense, but it's a straightforward surgical procedure and is the quickest and easiest way to correct a severe posterior open bite.
When your dentist tells you that treatment will be needed to correct your posterior open bite, the actual treatment to come will be determined by just how open your bite actually is