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Malocclusion: what a word. What does it mean? This is a fancy term for a “bad bite,” or a misalignment in your teeth and jaw. Bad bites can be triggered by oral accidents, genetics, unhealthy habits, improper oral hygiene, or a combination of these as well as other factors. Some of the most common forms of malocclusions are:

Malocclusions of the incisors:

Misplaced midline: when your upper and lower incisors don’t align.

Underbite: When your lower incisors jut out past your upper incisors. These are sometimes also called “bulldog teeth.”

Overbite: When your upper incisors overhang your lower incisors; these can also be called “buck teeth.”

Open Bite: Any other variation in which your upper and lower incisors don’t connect when biting down.

Other forms of malocclusions:

Crossbite: When your lower jawbone protrudes past your upper jawbone.

Transposition Malocclusion: When teeth erupt above the gumline in the wrong places.

Rotation Malocclusion: When teeth slowly slip and slide out of correct alignment.

Spacing Malocclusions: These occur if there are asymmetrical gaps in your mouth, overcrowded teeth, or large gaps between your teeth.

If you think you may have a malocclusion, talk to your orthodontist. The orthodontics team will be able to correctly diagnose any alignment problems and help you evaluate your options.

For more oral health care advice or to schedule an oral exam with Dr. Joseph A. Wilson and our team at our orthodontic office in Farmington, New Mexico, just call Orthodontics, Inc. at (505) 325-8858. We look forward to helping you soon!