Bad open bite!

(15 Posts)
Rbkhnmh Tue 05-May-20 17:05:05

I have a really bad open bite from when I sucked my thumb. It was a really bad habit that I struggled to break. Even though I didn’t do it during the day I would naturally do it in my sleep without realising until I woke up! This has given me a terrible open bite and my 4 top teeth don’t touch and stick out terribly! Im desperate to get them fixed because it’s affecting my speech, the way I eat and wearing down my back teeth where I am over using them and I also struggle to breath properly at times because of it. I’m 26 now and I don’t have the money to drop 4K on them, not even in instalments. My dentist has said they can’t help me so I don’t know how I can get them done. It’s knocked my mental health massively. Wish I could win the lottery and get them fixed.

OP’s posts: |
JacquiDeVille Tue 05-May-20 21:45:16

Cheaper online invisalign? Increase your income so you can afford it? Save up? Sell assets? Borrow from family?

DishRanAwayWithTheSpoon Tue 05-May-20 22:33:11

An open bite can be quite hard to correct. I wouldnt go for a cheap option, you need an orthodontists opinion. It might not be correctable with invisalign

Honestly your back teeth shouldnt have worn by 26 just by not biting on 4 front teeth. It sounds like theres more going on.

An open bite also shouldnt cause difficulties breathing either.

You need to get the wear sorted first before you even consider orthodontics. And thats something to talk to your dentist about, they can find out the causes and prevent further damage.

Tbh OP there isnt a cheap or quick fix. Orthodontic work costs that much because thats what it costs unfortunately. Why did you not have braces as a teenager? Were you not offered treatment?

justtb Tue 05-May-20 22:47:06

If it's really affecting your confidence go the the doctors they might be able to refer you to an orthodontist at the hospital and then you will be able to get it for free

Lampan Tue 05-May-20 23:00:00

Have you seen an orthodontist about it? I have a very big open bite also from thumb sucking and was referred to an orthodontist when I was a teenager, I was told that I would need an operation on my jawbone and then braces in order to fix it. I decided to live with it! It doesn’t affect my breathing or speech though, and eating only in so far as not being able to bite through a sandwich!
Maybe once lockdown is over see if you can be referred to an orthodontist, but be prepared that you might need fairly drastic measures to correct it.

stiffchain Tue 05-May-20 23:15:03

Invisalign won't work. However it sounds pretty bad. If it's high on the IOTN scale ( higher the number the worse the malocclusion) there would be a case of NHS funding for treatment. In Scotland that would mean free treatment if you are receiving a benefit such as tax credits. An orthodontist would need to apply for prior approval for funding, but it's relatively common. If too complicated for orthodontist you could be referred to a hospital consultant, where treatment again would be free.
I'm not sure about England or other parts of U.K., but surely they must have a similar system?

DishRanAwayWithTheSpoon Tue 05-May-20 23:44:40

There is some NHS provision for adult orthodontics in england but generally its got to be pretty severe or complex, it is case by case and rare. It has to be carried out by an orthodontist with a contract for adult nhs work and there arent many.

Obviously if OP qualified for hospital orthodontics that would be free.
Op may qualify for adult funding with affected speech and difficulty eating, but I dont know how likely that is.

Avsolutely what you do not do Op is go to your dr and get referred to the hospital, that wont happen. You need to see both your dentist (to discuss toothwear) and an orthodontist when this is over and find out where you stand


JacquiDeVille Wed 06-May-20 04:42:25

Op would you post a photo of your teeth?
To PP, If it was severe enough to be eligible for free ortho treatment then why would the dentist say no way?

Rbkhnmh Thu 07-May-20 09:38:59

Thank you everyone, I’ve seen the dentist. She did the X-rays and sent them off to the NHS, but they came back and said they didn’t have the funding to help. I’ve noticed because of the gap I have more saliva than normal. Sorry what I meant by my teeth being worn down is just that because I’m biting and chewing they are being used more than they should, which was what the dentist said. I’m a single parent so I can only afford so much. I’m only bothered about them as they affect my speech and eating, otherwise I think I’d be fine with a small gap. I’m not sure how you attach photos but when I work it out I’ll post a picture to show what I mean 😊 x

OP’s posts: |
DishRanAwayWithTheSpoon Thu 07-May-20 13:33:12

Is it you struggle to swallow your saliva?

I still dont think that by 26 you should have visible wear on your teeth because of an open bite. Its much more likely to be a habit thing or a diet thing. Its not like your biting on only one tooth and tbh you wouldnt be using your molars significantly more than usual anyway as you only use your incisors for biting.

If your dentist has tried for NHS funding then unfortunately theres only 2 things you can do learn to live with it or save for private orthodontics.

The alternative is going to an actual orthodontist not your dentist and seeing what they say about funding. But there isnt a solution your dentist can really offer. Funding can change so its worth trying again in a few years or trying different orthodontists, as only a few will have adult nhs contracts.

MsHeffaPiglet Thu 07-May-20 22:27:54

I feel for you OP.

I had the same problem with the same cause. Luckily I had major surgery on the NHS years ago to fix it when there wasn't funding issues that there is now.

Though you shouldn't have to wait until your situation gets worse before you can have the right treatment, maybe you can ask your dentist for a referral to a dental hospital in another year or so.

Could you try changing dentist, to someone that will push your case harder?

MsHeffaPiglet Thu 07-May-20 22:33:08


Yes you can have serious wear on your teeth at an early age due an open bite. It happened to me so I had the operation when I was late teens and had stopped growing.

Rbkhnmh Fri 08-May-20 20:29:14

Thank you, yes that’s what the dentist said to me. She said they are wearing down more than they should as im having to bite and chew with them. Once we can go back to seeing them I think I’ll push to see what else can be done. It’s just frustrating when talking and eating and a part of me hates the way my face looks as my mouth looks gross if I’m honest. X

OP’s posts: |
DishRanAwayWithTheSpoon Fri 08-May-20 22:41:00

@MsHeffaPiglet Im a dentist. Whilst an open bite could exacerbate an issue, an open bite alone is not going to wear your molar teeth by 26.

If there is evidence of wear its much more likely to be due to a habit such as clenching/grinding, or an acidic diet/reflux. If you grind and have an opn bite you will have more wear than someone without, but the problem is the grinding. An Open bite of 4 teeth you are still biting on 10 teeth per arch.

OP, Im really not sure theres much else the dentist can do. You need to see an orthodontist, they might be able to help more.

A dental hospital isnt a magic portal to free treatment, they will still only see you based on clinical need. They are more likely to accept a referral from an orthodontist anyway, so look at local orthodontists and book a consultation

MsHeffaPiglet Mon 11-May-20 02:14:23


Sorry, forgot to check back on this thread so only just seen your comment.

My open bite was so bad I couldn't bite anything like an apple. Maybe that is why I was given the operation on my lower jaw. Has wisdom teeth removed and later on had bits of my jaw removed at two points on either side.


The surgeon warned me beforehand that it would take quite a few years to get used to my new face shape. It was very true. Sometimes I regretted it but being able to bite properly made it worthwhile. It's been a few decades later and I've forgotten my old face shape. Good point was the treatment got rid of the gap in the middle of my upper teeth. Yeah!

Anyway, I hope you can as advised, try to get something done with orthodontics if possible to at least improve things. Good luck.

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