Top and Bottom Baces for Overbite?

If my daughter has an overbite, does she have to get bottom braces also or can she have just top braces?

Doctor Answers 3

Top braces only for overbite correction?

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Most overbites involve both upper and lower teeth being out of position and may also be a result of jaw growth imbalance. So it is unlikely that just top braces can fix the problem. Most orthodonitsts recognize that attempting to use only upper braces will likely result in an unsatisfactory outcome. So the best way to ensure that the problem will be fixed and that your child will have the healthiest bite and most attractive smile possible is to follow your orthodontist's recommendation - and that will probably be for upper and lower braces. 

Mercer Island Orthodontist

All orthodontists will recommend braces on both upper and lower teeth

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This question is a good one.  The upper front teeth are the only ones you really see, why correct the others?  The teeth are made to fit together like a fine set of gears.  All orthodontists would recommend braces on both upper and lower teeth to not only create proper function, but long term stability.  A myth is that the braces are what costs so much in orthodontics, therefore money can be saved by correcting only the uppers, or only the lowers.  It takes the orthodontist and  office almost as much time to correct just the upper or lower teeth as it does to correct both at the same time. The time is where the cost is.   It may not even be possible to correct one without correcting the other.  Even if your teeth are corrected to your satisfaction, the long term stability may be poor.  Do you want to repeat the whole process in 10 years more years? Do the job right the first time and have both corrected, if that is what your orthodontist recommends.  Sorry!

Overbites are best treated with upper and lower braces

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She will achieve the best overall result by getting braces on both upper and lower teeth. If you think of upper and lower teeth fitting together like a puzzle then you can understand why it is important to be able to move upper and lower teeth at the same time. In other words, the teeth have to fit together in a certain way to be able to function properly. Moving upper teeth only may not allow the lower teeth to align and function with the upper teeth.

Your daughter's overbite may be improved with upper braces only but her bite function may not be improved and will therefore be compromised. As long as you understand the limitations of single arch treatment you are free to proceed with the course of treatment you desire.

Matt T. Walton, DMD
Suwanee Orthodontist

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.