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Common Orthodontic Problems

Crowded Teeth

Usually resulting from a discrepancy between jaw size and the size of the teeth, crowding is one of the most common orthodontic problems. Crowded teeth are unsightly, difficult to clean properly and can be the cause of further dental problems.

Treatment usually involves using braces to align the teeth and in some cases, it may be necessary to extract teeth to provide space for the remaining teeth to be aligned evenly.

Spaced Teeth

Like crowding, spaces between the teeth generally result from a difference in jaw and tooth size, however spacing can also occur when teeth are missing or abnormally shaped. Spaced teeth are unattractive and can affect speech.

Braces are used to close the gaps between the teeth to create an even smile and teeth that ‘fill up’ the mouth.

Overbite / Deep Bite

When the upper jaw is longer than the lower jaw, the upper teeth sit too far ahead of the lower teeth and can sometimes protrude (stick out). This looks unpleasant and can lead to further issues.

Treatment of an overbite involves jaw and teeth alignment which can be done in two stages or simultaneously, depending on the case.


An underbite occurs when the lower teeth sit outside of the upper teeth. This is also known as cross-bite. Cross-bites involving back teeth can be due to a narrow upper jaw and uncorrected, can lead to crowding, development of facial asymmetries or facial imbalance, where the lower jaw is positioned in front of the upper jaw. Uncorrected cross-bites can lead to excessive wear of the back or front teeth, as well as potentially case jaw problems resulting in on-going pain.

Similar to overbite treatment, the jaw and teeth are both aligned to restore a balanced facial profile and proper function of the teeth.


Often caused by thumb sucking, an open-bite is when the front or back teeth do not contact when the jaws are closed. Open bites can cause issues with eating, speech and jaw function.