How Can Braces Fix Overbites and Underbites?

Having a great smile is no small task. For some, a stray tooth or a few gaps between your teeth can be the difference between a good smile and a dream smile. However, your smile may face a harder challenge: an overbite or an underbite. At Botsford Family Orthodontics, we aim to guide you through understanding what you have and beginning treatment to bring your dream smile to life. Let’s dive in and break down how braces can fix overbites or underbites.

Understanding Overbites & Underbites

Your jaw and your teeth work best when they’re lined up. However, they don’t always like to agree and can become misaligned for many different reasons. When your teeth and jaw aren’t aligned, we call this condition a malocclusion. Malocclusions can appear in different forms, but two of the most common are overbites and underbites.


An overbite is when the upper front teeth go out further than the lower front teeth. It’s the more common of the two, with many having a slight overbite. While not all overbites require 

treatment, more severe cases can harm your smile. 

Overbites can either be dental or skeletal. The position of your teeth causes dental overbites, while the structure of the jawbone causes skeletal overbites. Both of these can come from genetics or habits from your childhood, such as thumb-sucking or prolonged pacifier use. 


An underbite is when the lower front teeth go out further than the upper front teeth. It’s the least common and most severe malocclusion you can have. Most times, underbites are skeletal, which means the jaw rather than the teeth cause misalignment.

Genetics and outside habits and events, such as an injury, can still cause underbites. With a prominent lower jaw, you’re more at risk for serious health and bite issues. 

Overbites and underbites can both lead to functional and aesthetic concerns. At Botsford Family Orthodontics, we’ll make sure you have all the details on which malocclusion you have and what complications can arise from not treating them. 

Can Braces Fix Overbites and Underbites?

Overbite & Underbite Problems

Overbites and underbites are more than aesthetic problems; they also complicate your oral health and well-being. If left untreated, you can face some nasty problems.

Your Bite, Your Problems

The biggest problem that an overbite or underbite can bring is the function of your jaw. When you have malocclusion, it can impact your chewing and swallowing and your speech and even lead to TMJ disorders. 

When you have a malocclusion, you won’t be able to chew your food properly. This situation can result in not breaking down large bites enough before swallowing, which creates hazards.

Both overbites and underbites can affect the positioning and the movement of your tongue, leading to speech impediments, challenges in articulation, and general pains in everyday chatting. TMJ disorders are when there’s undue stress on the jaw joint and muscles and can bring on some serious discomfort. 

Your Bite, Your Teeth

If your smile is misaligned, you may face new challenges in cleaning and protecting your teeth. Teeth that aren’t aligned due to malocclusion can experience uneven wear and tear, leading to tooth enamel decay, heightened risk of cavities, and tooth sensitivity.

Misaligned teeth are also difficult to clean. Daily oral hygiene practices can be more challenging, resulting in plaque buildup and gum disease.

Finally, protruding teeth from an overbite or underbite can have a higher chance of injury from trauma. Accidents or impacts to the mouth or jaw can damage misaligned teeth.

Your Bite, Your Confidence

An overbite or underbite can affect your self-esteem and confidence. This can bring social and emotional challenges, especially for teens. Your teen may even experience social anxiety, avoiding social situations, and even bullying.

Solving Your Bite Problems

At Botsford Family Orthodontics, we want to tackle overbites and underbites early and effectively. With treatment options for any smile, our goal is to bring you a smile you’ll love. 

During your first consultation with us, we’ll look into your past dental history, take some X-rays and photos of your teeth, and come up with a treatment plan that fits you. The choice of treatment usually depends on the severity of your case and the specific needs or wants you or your child may have.

Can Braces Fix Overbites and Underbites?

Treatment Options For Your Bite

Dr. Botsford builds a treatment plan with you in mind. We decide your orthodontic treatment based on your specific malocclusion, your age, and any special accommodations you may need. Let’s look into the types of braces we provide to fix overbites or underbites, so you can be more familiar before your treatment begins.

Understanding Braces

Braces are a tried-and-true method of treatment at Botsford Family Orthodontics. They’re able to fight even the toughest overbite or underbite. Braces provide continuous pressure to your teeth and jaw, slowly moving them into the right place. 

Braces consist of two main pieces: brackets and an archwire. The orthodontist fixes brackets directly to your teeth to serve as anchor points for the archwire. They then fix the archwire across your brackets to guide your teeth as they move. 

By visiting us every few weeks, we’ll adjust your archwire to keep precise force on your smile. We’ll slowly correct your malocclusion by moving your teeth and jaw, making your dream smile appear.

Depending on whether you have an overbite or underbite, we may pair your braces with an appliance, such as headgear or palatal expanders. These can help encourage the forward growth of the upper or lower jaw. However, we may recommend surgery for the most severe of cases.

Types of Braces

If you are about to start your braces journey with us, there are two different types that you have the option for. Metal Braces are one of our most common treatments. Able to handle the toughest cases, metal braces are robust and efficient and use metal brackets to attach to your teeth. They’re very visible, with a reflective metal shine that you may not like.

On the other hand, there’s a less visible option in clear braces. These use ceramic brackets that blend with your teeth’s natural color, making them less noticeable. While more aesthetically pleasing, they are a little weaker when compared to metal braces due to their different material.

Can Braces Fix Overbites and Underbites?

Smile Bright With Botsford Family Orthodontics

No matter your malocclusion, we’ll bring your dream smile to life at Botsford Family Orthodontics in Medford. If you or someone you know is ready to start the journey, reach out to us by scheduling your free consultation today!