The term 'malocclusion' refers to a misalignment of the teeth. Teeth misalignment is generally caused by a combination of inherited and behavioural factors.
There are multiple forms of malocclusions, including crossbite, crowded teeth, underbite, overbite, and open bite.
All teeth misalignments can make it harder to eat, breathe and speak normally and comfortably.
So what actually causes malocclusion? Is there a way to prevent it?
Malocclusion is most often an inherited condition, and so in many cases, it can’t really be prevented as such. Catching and treating it early on, however, will lessen its effects over time.
In certain cases, malocclusion can be the result of certain conditions or habits that can be nipped in the bud. In other words, malocclusion can be largely avoided is these issues are dealt with early on. These include:
- frequent pacifier use past the page of 3
- thumb sucking past the age of 3
- prolonged bottle feeding
- injuries resulting in jaw misalignment
- poor dental care resulting in tooth loss
If the above problems problems are taken care of early, the malocclusion that might otherwise result can be avoided.