Everyone knows a few facts about orthodontics, but there are many others that you may not know! Learn a few terms before you contact an orthodontist for treatment.

Most people already know what dental braces and overbites are. These terms are part of the orthodontics field that deals with misaligned teeth and jaws. There are many basic terms and complicated ones that are not well known. Learn more about our favorite terms that are used by orthodontists.

Dentofacial Orthopedics

Orthopedics, in general, is a field of medicine in which doctors diagnose and treat musculoskeletal disorders. These include broken bones along with neck, knee and lower back pain. Orthopedics is linked to bone health and orthodontics.

Dentofacial orthopedics involves treating the musculoskeletal structures of the face and mouth. Doctors monitor the development of bones that affect the teeth, gums, and the jaw.

Orthognathic Surgery

The health of the jaw affects the alignment of the teeth. Orthognathic surgery is necessary to treat jaws that are misaligned or deformed. This surgery treats the temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder that tightens the jaw muscles and causes chronic pain. Without a healthy jaw, the bones do not grow properly to support the teeth.


Malocclusion is the professional term for misaligned teeth. This misalignment affects the two rows of teeth that come together when the mouth closes. The two main types are overbite and underbite. An overbite occurs when the top row overlaps the bottom row. An underbite is opposite when the bottom row sticks out from under the top row.


Demineralization occurs when the body has reduced its production of bone. This is caused by a bone disease or severe lack of calcium. The decaying teeth do not grow properly. In cases of severe bone loss, the teeth fall out and cannot be restored.

Orthodontics is necessary for optimal dental health. Orthodontists work to rebuild the health of the jaw and bones around the mouth. At Speaks Orthodontics, we recommend various treatments to straighten teeth for adult and child patients.

For more information on some of our favorite terms or scheduling an appointment, contact us today!