Anterior open bite in the deciduous dentition: longitudinal follow-up and craniofacial growth considerations

Am J Orthod Dentofacial Orthop. 2002 Oct;122(4):353-8. doi: 10.1067/mod.2002.126898.


The aim of this longitudinal cephalometric study was to evaluate craniofacial growth changes in subjects with an anterior open bite in the deciduous dentition. From longitudinal records of untreated subjects, an open bite group (n = 14) was selected at the age of 5 years based on the presence of a negative overbite and compared with a control group (n = 14) with a regular overbite at this age. Cephalometric measurements were analyzed at ages 5, 9, and 12 years. Although only 1 subject in the deciduous dentition open bite group had an open bite at 12 years of age, the overbite remained lower during the longitudinal follow-up. Early cephalometric characteristics of the open bite group included a reduced overbite depth indicator and a lower ANB angle. At ages 9 and 12 years, the open bite sample was also characterized by shorter ramus height. An underlying skeletal pattern seems to be present in the deciduous dentition open bite sample that persists during the longitudinal follow-up. The overbite depth indicator might help to identify patients with anterior open bite tendencies.

MeSH terms

  • Case-Control Studies
  • Cephalometry
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Cuspid
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Incisor
  • Longitudinal Studies
  • Maxillofacial Development*
  • Open Bite / diagnosis
  • Open Bite / physiopathology*
  • Tooth, Deciduous
  • Vertical Dimension