Does my Crossbite Need to Be Corrected? (photo)

I had my braces put on last Thursday and my ortho discussed with me all the issues they want the braces to fix. Crowding was one of them and I thought my crossbite would be another since it was brought up at every consultation I went to. My ortho and his partner said they don't think they are going to correct it and that its not necessary and won't cause me any problems. My bite feels normal (prior to putting my braces on of course) but will this cause any long term problems if its not fixed?

Doctor Answers 2


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From the picture you posted , it looks like you are an adult, in which case I would agree with the recommendation of your orthodontists. In children it is very easy to expand the palate and alleviate a cross-bite, since the palatal suture ( bone)  has not fused. In an adult its a difficult and usually unsuccessful endeavor to expand the palate. You would need surgical assistance to get a stable result and most patients and orthodontist dont think its worth it. If your bite is comfortable, you should be fine to leave the cross-bite in the back.

San Diego Orthodontist

Sometimes crossbites don't cause problems

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Some studies out there have shown an association between posterior crossbites and jaw joint problems, but these studies were examining young children and adolescents. 

In asymptomatic middle aged adults (which I am guessing you are) where a crossbite has been present for a long time without causing problems, it is often a different story. Your orthodontist has taken a good look at the health of your jaws and decided that they are in good condition despite a long standing posterior crossbite.

Crossbites caused by a narrow upper jaw often aren't able to be corrected without some sort of minor surgical procedure. Your orthodontist likely doesn't want to put you through that if he/she thinks your jaw joints are not at risk. 

Scott Frey, DDS
Allentown Orthodontist

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