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How do you know if you have a normal bite or an overbite? How can these problems be identified and corrected? Our team at Walt Orthodontics is happy to help explain!

What is an optimal bite?

Many patients are referred to us for a ‘bad bite’. What does a good – or bad – bite mean? And why is a normal bite so important?

When Dr. Walt and Dr. Grossman discuss your bite, they’re talking about how your upper and lower jaws fit together. The upper teeth should somewhat cover the lower teeth, and the tips of your molars should fit into the grooves of the molars opposite them. If your jaw is positioned like this, you most likely have a healthy (normal) bite.

People who have straight teeth and a healthy normal bite have proper fun function and balance with their teeth and jaws. Whereas, a misaligned bite can cause pain and undue pressure on certain teeth. This problem can also result in uneven wear.

A normal and functional bite helps support face symmetry, as well as daily functions including breathing, chewing, swallowing, digestion, and more.

A normal healthy bite includes the following:


Is your upper and lower jaw line symmetrical, and are your teeth aligned? If so, you most likely have a healthy, normal bite. Having just one tooth out of place can cause oral health problems for your entire mouth!

To properly chew your food, a strong and well-aligned bite is recommended. This is important as chewing can be taxing on our jaw and teeth. When you eat, your jaw and teeth will take the force, not the food. If your teeth are already misaligned, chewing can leave you in pain!


Your bite should not give you any discomfort or pain. If you have pain in the muscles surrounding your jaw or in your jawbone, this is a warning sign!

Supporting Your Tongue

When you think of your bite, you may not think of your tongue. However, it is essential for eating and communicating too. If your bite is off, your teeth may be nicking or cutting into the sides of your tongue. This can increase your risk for sores, which can become infected too. You can also bite on your cheek with a bad bite.


What exactly is a ‘bad’ bite?

If you have a bad bite, we refer to this as a ‘malocclusion.’ In Latin, this translates to “bad bite.” A malocclusion, or bad bite, can be caused by:

  • Missing teeth, impacted teeth, or excess teeth
  • Differences in the size of your upper and lower jaw
  • Birth defects such as a cleft palate
  • Differences in the size of your teeth
  • Childhood habits such as tongue thrusting, extended use of a pacifier, or thumb sucking

Overbite vs. Normal Bite & Other Concerns

There are four main types of ‘bad’ bites – overbitecrossbiteunderbite and open bite.

How can orthodontics help?

Come and see for yourself how orthodontic treatment can help your bite, with a personalized consultation from our experienced orthodontists. Remember, orthodontists are specialists who can realign your teeth, jaw, mouth, and face.

At Walt Orthodontics, we believe a healthy bite not only supports more functional teeth, but it can contribute to improved overall health and well-being too. Dr. Walt and Dr. Grossman treat patients of all ages – including children, teens and adults too.

Are you curious if you have a normal bite or if you should pursue orthodontic treatment? Book your complimentary consultation with us to find out! We love meeting new smiles in our Maple-Vaughan-Thornhill community!

In-Person Consultation

Use our handy online scheduler below to choose the date and time that works best for your initial complimentary consultation appointment!

Please note that while initial orthodontic consultations are complimentary, if you recently completed orthodontic treatment or currently are in active appliances with another provider, seeking a replacement/repair for a retainer, or looking to schedule a second consult after your initial one there is a fee for the consultation. Please contact us for more information.

Alternatively, please contact our office directly by phone/text if you are trying to book multiple consultations at the same time or are seeking consultation further out than 12 weeks.

Please note – If none of the available times on our online scheduler work for you we do have other consultation times available. Please contact us directly for more information.

Virtual Consultation

Skip the office visit and have your free consultation from the comfort of your home. The start to your beautiful smile is just a few photos and clicks away.

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When it comes to financing there’s no one size fits all solution. Likewise, there is no singular solution when it comes to financing. At LendCare, we get that and go deeper to understand your unique story and offer flexible options that work best for you, given your current financial situation. That means you get affordable financing, even if your credit is anything but top-tier.

Walt Orthodontics is pleased to offer interest-free payments up to 30 months. If you require payments over 30 months we are happy to offer the LendCare solution.


Dr. Walt received his dental (DDS) degree from the University of Western Ontario, graduating first in his class and receiving the Gold Medal as well as numerous awards recognizing his scholastic and clinical achievements, leadership and character. He then completed his orthodontic training at the University of Colorado, where he received both his Specialty Certificate and Master of Science Degree. During his residency, he was awarded the Rocky Mountain Orthodontics Scholarship for overall excellence.

After graduating from residency and opening Walt Orthodontics in 2013, Dr. Walt committed himself to applying his traditional orthodontic education into the digital world to improve clinical outcomes and patient experience. He currently serves as a Faculty Member, Key Opinion Leader, and Advisory Board Member for Align Technology which involves traveling around the world to teach other orthodontists about Invisalign. Being at the forefront of digital orthodontics, Dr. Walt was invited to be the first orthodontist in Canada to use custom LightForce braces. He also serves as an Orthodontic Coach/Mentor for other orthodontists looking to improve their knowledge of digital orthodontics.

In addition to practicing orthodontics, Dr. Walt is a “die-hard” Blue Jays fan and enjoys working out in his spare time.


Dr. Stephanie Grossman pursued her dental degree in sunny South Florida at Nova Southeastern University. She graduated with honours, at the top of her class, and was inducted into the Phi Kappa Phi Honour Society. She then completed her orthodontic training at the University of Detroit Mercy, where she received both a Specialty Certificate in Orthodontics and a Master of Science degree. She is both a diplomate of the American Board of Orthodontics and a Fellow of the Royal College of Dentists of Canada.

Dr. Grossman strives to provide the highest standard of orthodontic care for her patients. She attends numerous hours of continuing education and utilizes the latest advancements in orthodontics. Dr. Grossman is licensed to practice in both the United States and Canada.

Outside of the clinic, Dr. Grossman enjoys spending time with her friends and family and traveling the world. She is a self-proclaimed foodie and loves trying new restaurants!