Four non-surgical ways to correct bad bites in kids

A bad bite is a condition where the upper and lower jaws severely misalign when the jaws are closed. This condition is also known as malocclusion.  Bad bites can either be underbites, where the lower jaw protrudes over the upper one, or overbites, where the upper one significantly protrudes over the lower one. Other types are openbites or overbites. These conditions not only interfere with one's appearance but also lead to improper chemistry between your teeth and jaws, thereby hastening tooth wear. However, these conditions are treatable. If you've discovered such conditions in your kids, then here are some of the best treatment options you can use without taking your child to surgery.


Braces have proven their effectiveness in getting these bad bites under control. An anchor at the back teeth is connected to the brackets at the front teeth by a metal wire. The wire exerts tension over the teeth and gradually gets them back to their proper position. The tension is steadily increased untill the teeth retain their shape. Braces can treat all kinds of bad bites.

If your child doesn't like the look of braces, you could go for clear braces that are made from polymer. You could also get your child lingual braces that fit at the back of the teeth, making them practically invisible.

Palatal expanders

Expanders are another option when treating bad bites. This is a wire-frame device fitted on the teeth to assist in widening the jaws. Unlike braces that only move the teeth, palatal expanders move the right and left parts of a jaw. This technique works best in children because their jaws are in constant growth. The expanders are normally adjusted every night to expand the jaws. They can also be used to shorten the time your child will wear braces. When dealing with an underbite, for instance, an upper jaw expander can be used to widen the upper jaw till the teeth stop closing inside the lower jaw.

Tooth reshaping

Another option is to go for a tooth reshaping treatment. This is a good option when the bad bite is not as pronounced, and the teeth are fairly aligned. It works by evenly shaping out the teeth in a way that exerts minimal pressure across your gums.

Reverse-pull face mask

Chin cups or reverse-pull masks are also an option in treating bad bites. A chin cup is a device that looks like a headgear. It has got elastic bands placed around your child's head that connect to metal bands in the jaws. It works by limiting the growth of the lower jaw in relation to the upper one, thereby getting the teeth back into proper position. Chin cups can treat moderate to excessive bad bites.