12-06-2006 Happy Face

Smiling with a teddy bear

2012-1-16 FaceWhat is an open bite? Looks like we have a problem here.  There are different types of open bites.  Some open bites are skeletal in nature.  That means the bone growth and pattern of growth is divergent causing the open bite.  Some open bites are not cause buy bone growth but by other causes.  Allergies and mouth breathing are the one of the chief culprits here.   When children have severe allergies they tend to breath through there mouth all the time.  For proper bone growth and a wide upper palate the tongue has to sit on the roof of the mouth.  When it doesn’t the palate becomes narrow and a more vertical growth pattern follows causing an open bite.

Some open bites are caused by habits with tongue sucking dominating.  This 7 year  front teeth don’t meet when she closes her mouth.  Treatment modalities depends on the cause of the  open bite.  This is an open bite which was caused by a thumb resting between her teeth for many hours.  It will not correct by itself because even is she stopped sucking here thumb here tongue slide forward to sit in the space she could swallow. (swallowing is another subject)

Tongues can be retrained to swallow properly.  A very clever appliance is called the tongue roller or Blue Grass appliance (after Kentucky where the research was done)

For this young lady we closed the spaces with braces.  Retention is key in open bite cases not only because we want to establish a beautiful smile but because we want to retrain the tongue to swallow properly. (teeth together, tongue on the roof of the mouth and swallow)

You can see we have a great result here.  The secret ingredient was that she wanted to change and was  a fabulous patient.

Call our office for a free consultation at 374-0496.  Dr. K

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