An uneven bite can cause a range of complications that extend beyond the aesthetics of your smile. We’ve put together a list of the principal signs that could suggest you have an uneven bite as well as how this can be treated.
The most obvious indicator of an uneven bite is obviously the aesthetic changes that occur. You can look in the mirror and examine how your teeth match up to the general alignment of your face though it can be difficult to spot subtle changes which is why visiting an orthodontist as early as possible will stop the problem from escalating and requiring more complex treatment down the line.
Teeth grinding and jaw clenching
Teeth grinding and jaw clenching are a further sign of malocclusion – this is the specialist term for an uneven bite. If left untreated, the grinding and clenching will create tension in the jaw because your jaw will attempt to overcompensate for the misalignment that is occurring. You’re also at risk of wearing down your tooth enamel which is vital in protecting your teeth against the wear and tear of certain food and drink and once your tooth enamel is worn it is irrevocably gone, which is why prevention is so important in this context.
TMJ, also known as temporomandibular joint syndrome, is a jaw disorder that causes clicking and pain in the jaw. When you have an uneven bite, the muscles in your jaw have to work harder than usual to compensate as outlined above, leading to difficulty chewing and talking. Don’t ignore such pain as you may well be suffering from TMJ and here at Cliftonville, we can help.
An uneven bite will cause tension in the jaw as the muscles have to overstrain in order to function and in turn the tension will spread through your head, causing regular headaches.
If you are suffering from sensitivity in your teeth, this could be a sign that your tooth enamel is wearing due to grinding. Hot and cold foods may cause excessive sensitivity which can make mealtimes challenging and you may find yourself avoiding certain food and drink for this reason.
How can an uneven bite be treated?
Here at Cliftonville we understand that every patient is different and our approach to treatment is to treat each case individually rather than with a ‘one size fits all’ philosophy. We may prescribe an occlusal splint, custom created for your exact tooth structure with a view to creating a new bite surface that is in sync your jaw joints. The splint is like a sports mouthguard in appearance and worn principally during the night when you are most likely to grind your teeth. Orthodontic treatment can also be used as a remedy for an uneven bite – please visit our pages on the various braces we offer to find out more.
If patients have sustained damaged to the teeth as a result of TMJ, we can offer restorative treatment such as tooth bonding, crowns and veneers.
If you would like more information about TMJ or you think you might be suffering from the complications discussed above, please do not hesitate to get in touch with us here at Cliftonville and we can arrange an appointment for you with one of our highly experienced and friendly team.