When I line my teeth up the top teeth sit behind the bottom teeth. This underbite looks really bad and it is very uncomfortable for me. It is embarrassing too. I would not want to draw more attention to this problem with braces, so I am wondering what kind of cosmetic treatment for teeth will correct this without braces. Also is the treatment time shorter and will people notice that I am having something done to my teeth? What are some questions I should ask a cosmetic dentist to make sure that what he/she is recommending will work for my issue? I am expecting to pay a lot to correct the problem, but I don’t want it to have to get something done if it’s not the best way to treat it. Thanks for your help. Dinah

Dinah – The first step will be to find the cause of your underbite, or underjet. X-rays, photos, and 3-D models of your teeth will be taken to determine if only your teeth are misaligned, or if the problem involves your jawbone. In a large percentage of patients with underbite, the issue is with the teeth only.

If your jawbone structure is involved, the jawbone may need to be widened or repositioned, which will require orthodontic treatment. At times, surgical correction is needed. If you need braces, low-profile clear braces or invisible braces can help make the treatment less noticeable when you smile.

In either case, cosmetic dentistry won’t help with repositioning your teeth. It will help the appearance of your teeth in terms of color, shape, and other characteristics.

Schedule an appointment with an experienced cosmetic dentist for an exam and x-rays. He or she will determine which of your smile goals can be achieved with cosmetic dentistry, and which need orthodontic treatment.

This post is sponsored by Colorado Springs cosmetic dentist Dr. Joseph Rota.