What Is an Overjet?

When it comes to addressing orthodontic problems, there is no one-size-fits-all solution. There are multiple types of issues orthodontists need to address to help patients get the best smile possible. One such issue is an overjet.

What Is an Overjet?

An overjet is a malocclusion related to your bite. Normally, your front teeth should bite down in front of your lower teeth with a small space in between them. However, someone with an overjet has teeth that stick out too far, making it impossible to bite down correctly and resulting in an irregular appearance. This condition is also often referred to as “buck teeth” and is often very noticeable. 

In addition to causing problems like being self-conscious about your appearance, overjets also often result in a lot of other significant problems for patients. Since the teeth aren’t pointed down at the right angle with an overjet, eating can be more difficult. Many patients with overjets also have problems speaking correctly and experience chronic jaw pain. 

Differences Between an Overbite and Overjet

One important distinction to make is the difference between an overbite and an overjet. There is understandably some confusion between the two, but they are very different problems. An overbite has to do with the position of the jaw. In an overbite, the upper jaw is positioned too far forward, often completely covering the lower jaw when there should be a portion of the lower jaw visible when biting down. As a result, the lower teeth may even make contact with the upper gums rather than gently meeting the upper teeth when you bite. 

However, the teeth may still be relatively straight in this case. It’s not a problem with the teeth sticking forward but rather an issue of the whole upper jaw. Overbites are taken care of by using elastic bands that pull the entire upper jaw into proper alignment with the lower jaw. In this situation, if a patient has braces, the brackets serve as anchors for the hooks the elastic bands are attached to. With Invisalign, tooth-colored hooks can be placed directly on the teeth and the aligners have small cut-outs to make room for the hooks and elastics. 

An overjet is different from an overbite, so it requires a different approach. 

How to Treat an Overjet

Since an overjet has to do with teeth not being straight, overjets can be fixed by getting orthodontic treatment with braces. We recommend getting custom braces that create a more precise fit around the overjet and efficiently move the teeth into place. This treatment option is just as affordable as braces, and is faster while also providing superior results. 

You can also very effectively fix your overjet by getting Invisalign. The clear plastic aligners will fit over the overjet teeth just fine, resulting in quick orthodontic movement and better all-around comfort. Choosing Invisalign also allows you to enjoy a clean-looking smile along with the convenience of having no food restrictions. 

The result with any of the above-mentioned treatments will be straight teeth that provide a more comfortable bite and a more appealing smile. 

Contact Milnor Orthodontics today to learn more about overjets and to find the right treatment option for you!

At Milnor Orthodontics, our experts are here to help you achieve a priceless smile. Call our office at (970) 230-3187 or visit milnororthodontics.com to learn more. We're located at 1103 S. Shields St. in Fort Collins, Colorado.