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View Full Version : I've noticed many famous sexy women have overbites. Why waste $$ on Braces?


aceplace57
04-20-2011, 04:58 PM
If you watch much tv, movies or even some female singers there's a lot of sexy ladies with overbites.

Why do Americans spend a fortune on orthodontics?

I'm a former patient (male) that wore braces for 6 years. Then a permanent lower retainer into my thirties. I started getting gum disease from the retainer and they removed it. By age 40 my overbite was back. I'm still alive, happy, and chew fine.

I realize in extreme cases an overbite can adversely effect mastication. But we're sending kids for braces like it's a rite of puberty.

Any thoughts? Is there a gender bias? Women with overbites are sexy, but men with similar overbites aren't?

Laggard
04-20-2011, 05:07 PM
Well I never got braces because of an overbite but rather because my teeth were just crooked. I suspect that's the case for many people.

Zsofia
04-20-2011, 05:08 PM
Well, there are overbites and then there are OVERBITES. Some of us had the latter.

aceplace57
04-20-2011, 05:40 PM
Cheryl Burke has the classic sexy pout.

http://www.imagebam.com/image/34c6fe128830939

dangermom
04-20-2011, 05:52 PM
Well, there are overbites and then there are OVERBITES. Some of us had the latter.
Yep. And some of us had seriously crowded and crooked teeth.

aceplace57
04-20-2011, 06:24 PM
Is orthodontics primarily an American thing?

I've heard comments many times about Brits and bad teeth. I watch several Brit shows and it's not unusual to see a crooked tooth, overbite etc. Britain is a wealthy nation. They could spend money on whatever they feel is important. Maybe a crooked tooth isn't that big a deal to them?

How about the rest of Europe? Do most kids get braces?

Jenaroph
04-20-2011, 06:26 PM
Really, my sister had a broken arm and it healed up just fine without a cast. Why do we put casts on broken arms like it's some kind of rite of passage?

Of people who get orthodontic treatment, not everybody's problem is an overbite. Not everybody's problem is just fine if they leave it be. Different issues call for different methods of treatment. 6 years, and a permanent retainer? That's way more treatment than average. And, has any dentist advised you about issues you may have in the future? I had braces for 5 years, and within a week of my retainer breaking (because of an entirely foreseeable design flaw) my overbite was back. It stems from an issue that would require surgery to correct, which I have opted to forgo, and because of that, while I "chew fine" right now, I am at high risk for degenerative arthritis in the temporomandibular joint.

I can't fathom why "what other people find sexy" is even a factor here.

rhubarbarin
04-20-2011, 06:30 PM
I think American orthodontics are mostly a giant scam. There is no need for everyone to have a perfectly aligned bite. As long as you don't have functional problems, severe crookedness, or a disfiguring overbite (something like this (http://www.sanfordbraces.com/images/overbite.jpg)), your teeth are going to be fine.

I have straight, white, square teeth, with no gaps, which also have a large overjet between the top and bottom. I get tons of compliments on my teeth.

My parents insisted on spending thousands of dollars on braces which I didn't want. I got them removed when I turned 18 and I never wore my retainer, so they are right back where they were pre-braces. I like my overbite and it has zero negative effect on my life or my teeth... and my boyfriend of 6 years has a 'thing' for overbites.

ETA: Here is the same picture of my 'severe' overbite I posted in another overbite thread. (http://img139.imageshack.us/img139/7271/picture0109o.jpg)

HazelNutCoffee
04-20-2011, 09:23 PM
I have an overbite and have always wanted to get it fixed, but it would be far too complicated at this point. As a teen I was quite sensitive about it, but now I don't really care. Although if I could wave a wand to fix it I would. (I guess I do care, but not enough to invest the time and money into fixing it.)

SeaDragonTattoo
04-20-2011, 09:48 PM
I somehow don't understand the overbite thing. Don't the vast majority of people have an overbite of some degree? I see most people I've met to have at least a slight overlap of the top teeth over the bottom teeth. It seems odd when I see someone with front teeth that meet along the edges. The pictures posted so far just look like normal bites to me.

It's only a problem when teeth are crooked, or crowded, or when deciduous teeth are retained behind the permanents and such, causing problems with mastication and subsequent pain or long-term disfigurement, isn't that correct? Cosmetic issues with overbite would just be if the teeth aren't straight up-and-down. My stepsister had her braces removed a couple of months early and her front teeth slant a little bit forward and I think that looks kinda funny. Is that what people are talking about?

My dentist told me when I was 12 or so that he would put braces on me if I wanted "movie star" teeth, since my bottom front teeth meet in a "V" rather than totally straight, and my eyeteeth are a little rotated, but he said there was no medical reason to do it. I said, "great!" and am perfectly happy with my smile that I still get compliments on 28 years later. Teeth don't need to be perfectly straight to be attractive, but symmetry makes a big difference, I think.

There was another thread a while ago about overbites, and I didn't get it then, either. It just seems like what people are referring to is what I see most of the time and doesn't even seem like something to even notice.

Underbites, though, those are a whole different ball game !

rhubarbarin
04-20-2011, 10:32 PM
The top teeth are supposed to come down in front of the bottom teeth, but they are supposed to fit fairly closely together (like under a certain amount of mm apart). These days, if your child has space between the two over a certain number, even with perfectly straight, non-gappy, normal-looking teeth, your dentist will recommend orthodontia. They want everyone to have an absolutely perfect 'bite'.

My overbite is classed as 'severe' BTW. And my teeth look perfectly normal.

Upper and lower teeth that met on the edges would be classified as an underbite.

A receding lower jaw is not an overbite, although it's often referred to as such. It's retrognathism. Often it's combined with overbite.

WOOKINPANUB
04-20-2011, 10:39 PM
I had a pretty prominent overbite but more importantly I had lots of spaces between my teeth due to, I guess, a big jaw bone. When, at fourteen, I got my braces off after having worn them for two or so years I had a "perfect smile" which was great. But as another poster said, I didn't wear my retainer and they slowly reverted. Over the years I've lost a few teeth so now the spaces are back plus the overbite (though maybe not quite as prominent). To this day I get compliments on my smile which I personally am self conscious about but which seems, to the outside world anyway, to be nice.
As to why overbites are sexy to some people, I had a male friend tell me once that they tend to form your lips into a shape that hints at, er, a propensity for oral sex.
Underbites, however, always look to me like the person is always conflicted and holding a grudge. Think Keira Knightley (http://vipchain.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/03/keira-knightley-pirates-of-the-caribbean.jpg).

As for the big push for orthodonture, I agree it is cosmetic is many instances but I think many people don't realize the effects having teeth out of alignment have on all your other teeth and jaws which can lead to a myriad of problems.

aceplace57
04-20-2011, 11:04 PM
I recall my Orthodontist making a plastic Paris mold of my teeth before my braces went on. It was very obvious what was out of alignment. I had gaps between a few teeth. The dentist cut out a piece of gum tissue that was keeping my two front teeth apart.

I'm pretty sure he made another mold before the braces came off. This was late 1970's.

I wonder if they still make molds like that?

Zsofia
04-20-2011, 11:05 PM
I looked for the pictures I uploaded for some thread of awkward adolescent pictures - while a degree of overbite is normal (and what I have now) there is a lot to be said for modern American orthodontics. I had the kind of overbite normally associated with cliched Asian scientists warning the multitudes of Godzilla's approach, okay? And I met a girl from my college class last weekend at our reunion and... Jesus Christ her parents should have taken out that second mortgage, okay? She looked awful. Her teeth were all pointy and two of them were erupting out of the gums up above her teeth and, good lord, it was bad. She would have been a pretty girl without the tooth stuff. That's why Americans pay the big bucks for orthodontics, not necessarily to fix things that are fine on their own.

ETA - sorry, at the beginning I meant to say that I've obviously deleted those pictures out of shame. I'll see if I can find them somewhere for the public good.

rhubarbarin
04-20-2011, 11:06 PM
I am absolutely in favor of the magic orthodontics can work on truly messed-up teeth!

ladyfoxfyre
04-20-2011, 11:13 PM
I think you are probably referring to something else: a number of sexy women are attractive despite their overbite.

Pyper
04-20-2011, 11:18 PM
My overbite was so bad my teeth actually fit over my bottom lip when I closed my mouth. I had to wear a retainer for four years to push back my teeth before they even put me in braces.

elfkin477
04-20-2011, 11:23 PM
The top teeth are supposed to come down in front of the bottom teeth, but they are supposed to fit fairly closely together (like under a certain amount of mm apart).I don't really get it either. What is meant by "over," like the top teeth hang down too far by x mm, or are too far forward by x mm (aka bucktooth)?

For those of us not grasping the nuance, could some of you link to pictures to illustrate the difference between a normal bite and an overbite? Really clear examples in your opinion. So far none of the pictures in either thread have made this more obvious.

The Flying Dutchman
04-20-2011, 11:46 PM
They started calling me Bucky when I was around eight and it stuck. I pretty well abandoned my home town to get away from the constant reminder that I was malformed. I was part of a visible minority that wasn't cut any slack by the politically correct crowd. Leaving aside the death of my mother at 15, it was the most emotionally traumatic ordeal I've ever faced. I simply got my front four teeth pulled at the age of 35 in favour of a partial plate. No regrets.

I forked over many thousands of dollars for braces for my two daughters without blinking an eye.

Even the nicest people can be cruel.

Precambrianmollusc
04-21-2011, 12:01 AM
If you watch much tv, movies or even some female singers there's a lot of sexy ladies with overbites.

Why do Americans spend a fortune on orthodontics?

I'm a former patient (male) that wore braces for 6 years. Then a permanent lower retainer into my thirties. I started getting gum disease from the retainer and they removed it. By age 40 my overbite was back. I'm still alive, happy, and chew fine.

I realize in extreme cases an overbite can adversely effect mastication. But we're sending kids for braces like it's a rite of puberty.

Any thoughts? Is there a gender bias? Women with overbites are sexy, but men with similar overbites aren't?

I suspect that the ladies in question are viewed as sexy because of their charming personalities and forthright opinions on matters of social importance. The over bite is neither a sufficient or required condition to be viewed as sexy.

Dag Otto
04-21-2011, 01:19 AM
I think you are probably referring to something else: a number of sexy women are attractive despite their overbite.

Denying overbite porn is not helping fight ignorance. :D

2ManyTacos
04-21-2011, 01:42 AM
I had my braces removed a few months ago after having had them on for 2.5 years. In my case, the entire ordeal didn't simply necessitate the repositioning of my teeth; yeah, that was probably the central component to all of it, but during the course of my treatment I also had to have all 3 (yup, I only had three for some reason) of my wisdom teeth removed, gum surgery on my upper palette, and several of my teeth reshaped. Even now, I'm still not completely out of the woods since I'm having some extensive (ie expensive) dental work done in early May that is the result of my teeth being realigned in the way in which they were. The point at which this all becomes really obnoxious, I think, is in how the fact that I got my braces on later in life than most people usually do (at 17) meant that towards the end of my treatment (and obviously anything that has arisen since then) I was the person who became financially responsible for everything. Insurance company says "Sayonara!" when a minor turns 19 and so I'm left holding the bill; thankfully I'm employed enough to the point wherein, yeah, I can and have payed for the latter half of my treatment and everything since then, but again, I feel that it's just tedious more than anything.

But look, in spite of all of the financial, personal, and emotional costs of having gone through orthodontia, I honestly wouldn't take back ANY of it. It's the best thing that I've done for myself thus far in my life.

There's just something to be said about having straight teeth. Indeed, in my case the REASONING behind getting braces was certainly cosmetic; as a kid I was always self-conscious about my (formerly) crooked smile, and I gotta say that having an excellent smile now is a truly mindblowing sensation.

When the metal came off I insisted on having permanent retainers installed on both my upper and lower arches in order to eliminate any chance of my teeth returning to their original position. They're only slightly annoying and even then only half the time, and maybe a couple decades from now when my teeth have firmly "settled" I'll have a dentist take the retainers out, but in the meantime I don't regret having the permanent ones at all. I do NOT want to go through braces again.

BigT
04-21-2011, 02:58 AM
Even if overbites were sexy--you'll note that these people still have fairly straight teeth. In American, teeth are supposed to be straight. And then, while you're at it, why not get the top and bottom properly aligned?

I was going to say that I have an underbite, but it's a jaw thing. You can't tell unless I close my mouth, but it's there. It's the reason I'm not a big chewer: just chewing too hard can cause me TMJ pain. And, yet, I have nearly perfectly straight teeth due to braces. That's just what you do.

flodnak
04-21-2011, 07:00 AM
Elder Son didn't lose all of his baby teeth. Seriously. The new teeth just came in quietly, while some of his old teeth were still in place. (Fortunately for him, the nickname of "Sharky" didn't stick.) His teeth overlapped one another. The dentist said he needed to have the baby teeth pulled and the others put in braces, or the overlapping bits would be difficult to impossible to keep clean. The result would be tooth decay, gum disease, and potentially loss of teeth. He got braces and, by the way, now has an absolutely lovely smile.

Younger son has some crooked teeth and an overbite, but the dentist says all surfaces of his teeth can be cleaned. His teeth don't interfere with speaking or eating, and they aren't so odd that they make a difference to his appearance. Barring sudden changes over the next few years, he will not be getting braces.

Glory
04-21-2011, 10:04 AM
I had a significant overbite and overjet - I also got the unfortunate "bucky" nickname and had a pretty traumatizing 6th grade experience.

I had braces as a kid, didn't wear my retainer and my teeth shifted. I had big spaces on either side of my front teeth, an overbite, an overjet, the appearance of no chin and too much upper gum showed when I smiled. There was nothing pretty or sexy about my teeth, they were totally jacked up.

I had a combo of braces and major jaw surgery as an adult. Not only did my teeth look bad cosmetically, I had problems with my bite (my jaws would frequently painfully lock) and my surgeon said I was looking at issues down the road (he wrote an excellent justification letter to my insurance and the whole thing was covered, save a 100.00 copay). My lower jaw was brought forward and my upper palate was raised and widened.

Now I have lovely teeth (and wear my retainers EVERY night). It's been 11 years and I still sometimes flip down the mirror at a red light and smile to see my pretty teeth.

The Hamster King
04-21-2011, 10:12 AM
I was watching Tangled recently and I noticed the animators designed Rapunzel with a slight overbite. It was clearly intentional. The little imperfection makes her cuter.

rhubarbarin
04-21-2011, 12:39 PM
I don't really get it either. What is meant by "over," like the top teeth hang down too far by x mm, or are too far forward by x mm (aka bucktooth)?

For those of us not grasping the nuance, could some of you link to pictures to illustrate the difference between a normal bite and an overbite? Really clear examples in your opinion. So far none of the pictures in either thread have made this more obvious.

You made me do research and I am now fairly well educated about orthodontic issues. Still, can we get some orthos/dentists in here?
(http://orthocj.com/journal/uploads/2000/06/diagram-overjet.jpg)
To answer your first question, it seems overbite is the term used for the vertical space between upper and lower front teeth. Overjet is the term for the horizontal space. Negative overjet is also termed underbite. Handy illustration. (http://orthocj.com/journal/uploads/2000/06/diagram-overjet.jpg)

The technical term for any misalignment of the teeth between the upper and lower jaw is malocclusion. From malocclusion Wiki:

Angle Classification Method

Edward Angle (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Edward_Angle), who is considered the father of modern orthodontics, was the first to classify malocclusion. He based his classifications on the relative position of the maxillary first molar (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maxillary_first_molar).[2] (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Malocclusion#cite_note-1) According to Angle, the mesiobuccal cusp (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Commonly_used_terms_of_relationship_and_comparison_in_dentistry) of the upper first molar should rest on the mesiobuccal groove (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Commonly_used_terms_of_relationship_and_comparison_in_dentistry) of the mandibular first molar. The teeth should all fit on a line of occlusion which is a smooth curve through the central fossae and cingulum of the upper canines, and through the buccal cusp and incisal edges of the mandible. Any variations from this resulted in malocclusion types. It is also possible to have different classes of malocclusion on left and right sides.

Class I: Neutrocclusion Here the molar relationship of the occlusion is normal or as described for the maxillary first molar, but the other teeth have problems like spacing, crowding, over or under eruption, etc.
Class II: Distocclusion (retrognathism (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Retrognathism), overjet) In this situation, the upper molars are placed not in the mesiobuccal groove but anteriorly to it. Usually the mesiobuccal cusp rests in between the first mandibular molars and second premolars. There are two subtypes:

Class II Division 1: The molar relationships are like that of Class II and the anterior teeth are protruded.
Class II Division 2: The molar relationships are class II but the central are retroclined and the lateral teeth are seen overlapping the centrals.


Class III: Mesiocclusion (prognathism (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prognathism),negative overjet) is when the lower front teeth are more prominent than the upper front teeth. In this case the patient very often has a large mandible or a short maxillary bone.

Illustration of normal bite and all three classes of malocclusions. (http://img.tfd.com/dorland/thumbs/malocclusion.jpg)

To break that down to the best of my ability:

Class I:. Most importantly, these are non-skeletal issues. Varying degrees of protrusion of the top front teeth, and other tooth issues can be caused by tongue thrust, thumb-sucking, tooth crowding (with or without crookedness), the teeth not emerging straight, etc. Often causes 'overbite' (top front teeth coming down too far in front of bottom teeth).

Class II:. Retrognathism or overjet, where the upper and lower jaw are out of alignment and there is a large horizontal space between the upper and lower front teeth. This is often a skeletal issue issue involving an undersized lower jaw bone.

Class III: And underbite, usually skeletal. Oversized lower jaw bone or undersized upper jaw.

Class I and II can have varying degrees of overbite or overjet. Class II and III are often more fully treated with jaw surgery.

Class I (http://t1.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcTA6VgvH_kXnOqclJ8m_Tdlt8IDzdhFYXhNOEPf5PzqwY3ctwl7) before (http://www.my-ortho.com/images/Maxillary%20Crowding.jpg) and (http://orthodentalcare.com/images/Portfolio11.jpg) afters (http://www.my-ortho.com/images/Midline.jpg).

Class II (http://orthocj.com/journal/uploads/2000/06/imaging-before-after.jpg) before (http://orthocj.com/journal/uploads/2000/06/lower-jaw-advancement.jpg) and (http://www.my-ortho.com/IMAGES/overbite.jpg) afters (http://www.scielo.br/img/revistas/jaos/v17n3/a26fig01.jpg).

Class III (http://orthocj.com/journal/uploads/2000/06/lower-jaw-reduction.jpg) before (http://orthocj.com/journal/uploads/2000/06/underbite-before-after.jpg) and (http://orthocj.com/journal/uploads/2000/06/underbite.jpg) afters (http://orthocj.com/journal/uploads/2000/06/underbite2.jpg).

Page where I got a lot of those pictures - lots of information on surgical treatment of class II and III. (http://orthocj.com/2000/06/a-patients-guide-to-orthognathic-surgery/)

So I'm pretty sure I have an overjet (class II malocclusion), even though I don't have any noticeable shortening or recession of my lower jaw/chin. My next-youngest sister also has a bad overjet, but she does have pretty classic retrognathism.

rhubarbarin
04-21-2011, 12:51 PM
I will say that when I had braces and they tamed the protrusion of my upper front teeth while dragging my lower teeth and jaw forward with springs and elastics, I had the appearance of a bit too much lower jaw and chin (I remember thinking I looked a bit shark-like). My dad has a Jay Leno chin. Less jaw and chin action makes my face look prettier (more feminine) for sure, I will keep the overjet...

kaylasdad99
04-21-2011, 01:32 PM
For some reason, this discussion doesn't seem complete without a shout out to this fella. (http://images.wikia.com/familyguy/images/3/34/Jamesbottomtooth3.png)

Maybe it's just me...

OpalCat
04-22-2011, 03:38 PM
My son got braces because he had horribly mangled teeth. Teeth growing in on top of each other, teeth crossed over each other like you cross your fingers for luck, you name it. Now his braces are off and his teeth look so much better.

gallows fodder
04-22-2011, 10:26 PM
Wow those Before and After pics in rhubarbarin's post are amazing -- the afters look like completely different people!

I had braces to correct horribly misaligned teeth and an overbite -- I recognize those top incisors growing over the rest of the teeth in the pictures of the Class I malocclusions.

I do find overbites attractive, though. Whenever I play videogames like Dragon Age where you can design your characters' facial features, I always give them extreme overbites. Not sexy, necessarily, but aesthetically appealing.

rhubarbarin
04-23-2011, 11:51 AM
Wow those Before and After pics in rhubarbarin's post are amazing -- the afters look like completely different people!

I had braces to correct horribly misaligned teeth and an overbite -- I recognize those top incisors growing over the rest of the teeth in the pictures of the Class I malocclusions.

I do find overbites attractive, though. Whenever I play videogames like Dragon Age where you can design your characters' facial features, I always give them extreme overbites. Not sexy, necessarily, but aesthetically appealing.

Yeah jaw surgery is incredible stuff, who knew!

zweisamkeit
04-23-2011, 11:38 PM
I'd agree that most orthodontia Americans get is not completely necessary, strictly speaking; most kids with braces are getting straighter teeth, which can be more attractive and also perhaps increase facial symmetry/attraction as well. But most wouldn't, say, eventually be unable to chew if they didn't have the braces.

I needed them because the lateral incisors (http://www.simplyteeth.com/images/G_0150b.jpg) on my lower jaw never came in. Xrays would show these teeeny little proto-teeth buds way below that just fizzled and never came even close to the surface. Because I was missing two adult teeth, my lower jaw was starting to be too small in proportion to my upper jaw and it was guaranteed to get more and more severe, likely to the point of interfering with normal jaw activity. My braces gradually cranked those lower teeth out so there were spaces for two fake incisors to be put in. My dentist is awesome, because he didn't push for/pressure my parents to get implants ($$$$$$) and instead assured them that bridges would be fine (and only $$$ ;)) and last at least a decade (I'm on year... 13? Now). He also stressed that without a nightly retainer afterwards, my teeth would shift around, but as long as my bite was fine etc, that's what was important. So yeah, I didn't keep wearing the retainer and my teeth shifted a titch, but they're totally fine.


On the opposite end of the spectrum was a girl I went to grade school with. She first got braces when she was in first or second grade! She still had goddamned baby teeth, for crying out loud! She also had hers until right around the time I was done with mine, despite me getting mine 6 years later than she did :dubious: (and no, there was no major headgear, spacers, etc. Just rich parents in a rich old money suburb).

rhubarbarin
04-26-2011, 06:29 PM
About half the kids I know have braces on while they still have baby teeth! Many have two sets in their life, one age 10 or younger and the other in their teens; I did, and so did one of my sisters. The other sister got braces for the first time age 14 or so.

Maiira
04-27-2011, 12:55 AM
My sister had some pretty major tooth problems because our dog bit her on the face when she was about thirteen months old. Braces and orthodontia of all sorts were quite justified, because her teeth grew in pretty funky.

I got braces too, but in my case it was more cosmetic than anything else. I don't regret them, but they probably weren't as necessary. (And it didn't actually matter anyway--I lost my retainer and the crooked ones on the bottom went right back to where they were pre-braces.) I MIGHT get them realigned with some manner of retainer thingy someday if I have the cash to spend it on, but for now, meh. I don't care that much.

I did get all my wisdom teeth out fairly early (16), which was also justified--I have the unfortunate combination of big teeth + small mouth, so the overcrowding would've caused quite a bit of trouble later on.