Written by Rawan Nazer | Medically Reviewed by Dr. Shaista Salam, BDS, Dr. Zein El Hammouz, DDS, MFD/RCSI
1. What is a crossbite?
2. Types of crossbite
3. Causes of crossbite
4. What problems does crossbite cause?
5. Crossbite treatment
Crossbite is a type of dental malocclusion that affects dental alignment. This condition occurs when the upper teeth do not align correctly with the lower teeth when the jaws are fully closed.
Yes, the shape of the jaw is different when comparing them. The ideal bite of the teeth is when the upper teeth line up in front of the lower ones when the jaws are closed. In the case of a crossbite, the jaw changes shape due to improper teeth alignment.
One of the symptoms of a crossbite is teeth misalignment. For example, one tooth may be positioned behind the other, or you may have several teeth that are not appropriately positioned.
Crossbite can cause aesthetic problems, chewing problems, toothache, headache, sleep apnea, and temporomandibular joint (TMJ) problems.
Failure to treat the crossbite increases a person's susceptibility to other dental diseases. Since it is difficult to maintain regular dental hygiene, this also increases the risk of tooth decay and gum disease.
Crossbite treatment depends on several factors, such as the patient's age. The younger the patient, the better the outcome of crossbite treatment. Treatment also depends on the complexity of the condition.
Crossbite can be treated through orthopedic interventions, and the type of treatment depends on the severity of the crossbite and the patient's age.
Here are some common methods used to correct a crossbite:
• Palatal expanders: Palatal expanders widen the upper jaw, creating more space for the teeth.
• Teeth Extraction: If crowded teeth contribute to a crossbite, extracting one or more teeth can create the space needed for the teeth to align properly.
• Jaw surgery: Surgical treatment is usually limited to severe cases where a skeletal problem causes the crossbite.
• Removable devices: Removable devices such as aligners in conjunction with functional devices can also correct the crossbite.
• Fixed Metal braces: Traditional braces can be used to correct crossbites. Braces also apply continuous pressure on the teeth to move them into the correct position.