Open bite

Open bite is when the front teeth, and sometimes the back teeth, don’t fit together. It has two causes: improper position of the teeth (dental issues) or improper position of the bones (skeletal issues) of the teeth, upper and lower jaw.

  • Dental open bite can be treated with orthodontics.
  • Skeletal open bite can be treated with surgery to the facial skeleton or, in mild cases, with non-surgical skeletal anchors. This condition is caused when the jaws grow differently and the length of the mandible is affected, causing the teeth not to fit together, which means the patient cannot close the mouth properly.


The only treatments for open bite are a combination of orthognathic surgery and orthodontics or skeletal anchors. Open bite surgery is done to the upper jaw, which is moved upwards vertically, or to the lower jaw, which is moved forward and, often, rotated.

After removing the brackets, there may be some tendency to return to open bite. To compensate for this, the surgery includes bite correction: leaving a temporary contact between the front teeth with a minimal separation between the back teeth.

Treating a skeletal open bite with orthodontics, without working on the skeleton, leads to a relapse of the open bite after the orthodontics are removed.

Proper treatment for this condition must attack its cause: if it is dental, the teeth; and if it is skeletal, the bones.

Before treatment for open bite

After treatment for open bite

Dr Birbe is world-renowned surgeon specialising in the field of orthognathic surgery, giving him full expertise in conditions like the common condition open bite.

The following video shows Dr Birbe and a patient with open bite, who explains her experience of orthognathic surgery with the surgery first protocol.

What is the process for treating open bite?

First of all, we have to do a proper diagnosis of the open bite to determine how we will treat it.

  • If it is a dental issue, we will only use orthodontics.

  • If it is a skeletal issue, we will use skeletal orthodontics (screws and plates) when possible.
  • If it is a skeletal issue and the open bite is severe, we use orthodontics and orthognathic surgery so, if the patient desires, we can improve their facial proportions and lip position.

The steps are:

  • Diagnostic appointment. Bite registration and x-rays.

  • Assessment of treatment options.

  • Begin treatment. Orthodontics or surgery, depending on the case.

  • Stabilisation phase with oral stabilisers.

What results can we expect from the treatment?

The main change we achieve is closing the open bite. Plus, when orthognathic surgery is used, we achieve positive facial changes based on the desires of the patient. Some of our patients have contributed their testimonials.

Eva’s case

Eva’s teeth didn’t touch when she closed her mouth. She had an open bite that meant she couldn’t use her front teeth, as only her back teeth touched. This problem is due to excess growth of the posterior jawbone, which means the back teeth make contact first and stop the front ones from doing so. As her open bite was caused by skeletal issues, the solution was orthognathic surgery. The surgery only took one day and the orthodontics were super fast. They took the brackets off within six months.

“It was great! I wish I’d done it sooner!”, says Eva.

Sergio’s case

Sergio came to the Birbe Clinic referred from his orthodontist with open bite. Sergio was treated with orthodontics when he was a teenager but the condition returned over the years, meaning his condition was not only dental but also skeletal.

“There’s a huge change that I cannot express in words”, says Sergio.

Sergio before treatment for open bite

Sergio after treatment for open bite

Frequently asked questions

What maintenance does open bite treatment require?

After the treatment, the patient will have to wear invisible stabilisers at night for a few months.

How early can you have surgery for open bite?

It is possible to treat open bite with surgery from 12-14 years of age, depending on gender. The Birbe Clinic is a benchmark in treating this type of condition. We have done numerous surgeries, all with excellent results.

How much does open bite treatment cost at the Birbe Clinic?

The cost depends on the treatment used: between €3,000 (orthodontics) and €12,000 (orthognathic surgery). Remember, you will be in the hands of a prestigious clinic with a team of world-renowned professionals. You will undoubtedly receive the best service at the most competitive price on a treatment that is a lifelong investment.

Why should I have the operation at the Birbe Clinic?

  • We are leaders and pioneers in modern orthognathic surgery.

  • We strive for excellence in care and service, all of which can be seen in our top-notch results.

  • We recommend a treatment designed specifically for you, taking into account what is best for your health and wellbeing.

  • We have excellent technology and the best facilities to make our patients as comfortable as possible.
  • Quality, trust and experience. Our professional team is led by the world-renowned Dr Birbe, who is the only Spanish maxillofacial surgeon certified by the American Board of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery 2001.

  • Dr Birbe will see you personally and directly before, during and after the operation.

Equipo Clínica Birbe

Contact us: Ease and options

At your first appointment, we explain the different treatments available and the best option for your specific situation. You will deal directly with Dr Birbe, one of the most world-renowned maxillofacial surgeons in Barcelona. You will get:

  • Personal diagnosis after oral and facial exploration
  • Firm quote, along with different financing options
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Why the Birbe Clinic?

What do our patients have to say about us?

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