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Common Orthodontic Problems

Adult Orthodontics

Common Smile Concerns

Did you know that orthodontic treatment can offer much more than just straight teeth? When you visit Shine Orthodontics, Dr. Brandon Scheer will take the time to thoroughly examine your jaw structure, the health of your gums and jaw joints, and, of course, the alignment of your teeth and bite. Below, we’re explaining the common orthodontic problems we treat. To learn more about how we can address your bite concerns and give you a healthy smile, schedule a complimentary consultation with our experienced Thornton orthodontist by calling us at 303-452-7777.


Overbite actually refers to the amount of overlap between your upper and lower teeth. It is normal to have a small amount of overbite, but an excessive overbite can cause problems such as wear of the front teeth and jaw pain. When someone has too much overbite, it is called a deep bite.

Overjet (Protruded Teeth)

Overjet is sometimes confused with overbite, but it is slightly different. Overjet is the amount that upper front teeth stick out in front of the lower front teeth. Excessive overjet, also known as protruded teeth, can make you feel self-conscious, increase the risk of trauma or fracture to the front teeth, and affect jaw joint (TMJ) function.


An underbite is when the lower front teeth are on the outside of the upper front teeth. This is a serious orthodontic problem and causes issues with eating, excessive wear on the front teeth, and jaw joint (TMJ) problems.

Open Bite

An open bite is when the upper and lower front teeth do not overlap, or, in many cases, even meet at all. This makes it very difficult to eat, and causes excessive wear on the back teeth.


When a patient has a crossbite, the upper teeth sit on the inside of the lower teeth. Depending on which teeth are involved, it can be a back crossbite or a front crossbite. In a child, this will cause the jaws to grow asymmetrically. It can also cause pain and dysfunction in the jaw joint (TMJ).


When there isn’t enough room in the jaw to fit all of the teeth, crowding occurs. Crowded teeth may twist, overlap, or shift forward or back in an effort to squeeze in the allotted space. Since crowded teeth are harder to keep clean, crowding can increase the risk of tooth decay and gum disease.


Spacing is when there are gaps between two or more teeth. Gaps between the teeth are an aesthetic concern, however, spacing can also have a negative impact on the health of the gums and lead to jawbone loss.

Lip Posture

The front teeth support the posture of the lips. When the front teeth are not in proper relation with each other, it can change the appearance of people’s lips. It may cause the lips to look thin and retruded, with a deep fold between the lower lip and chin, or it may also cause the lips to be protruded and cause strain to close them. Dr. Brandon Scheer can correct many of these lip posture problems by first correcting the bite.