The eruption of your child's first baby tooth is an exciting event to be celebrated, but a time may soon follow when you notice a tooth that isn't in the usual place or crowded in between two normally spaced teeth. It's very common for children to develop supernumerary, or extra, teeth, but it still requires careful treatment by an experienced pediatric dentist. Discover why it's important to get treatment and what kind of procedures are available to correct the problem:
Even a single extra tooth can cause a number of painful problems for your child. Crowded teeth tend to trap food and bacteria in the tight gaps, resulting in cavities and the eventual need for root canals. A poor bite pattern also puts the teeth at risk for cracking and chipping as crooked or crowded teeth clash on the wrong bite surfaces. If the extra teeth don't erupt through the gum line, they become impacted and form painful abscesses and cysts. The roots of healthy teeth can even be damaged by severe overcrowding, causing your child to lose multiple teeth and develop a large gap in your bite pattern and smile. Sometimes a single tooth is safe to leave in place, but a dentist needs to make that call after a thorough examination.
Extraction at Early Stages
The best treatment is to identify the supernumerary teeth as early as possible and extract them while they're still small, or at least still a non-permanent tooth. Removing the tooth buds of early prevents the growth of the permanent tooth, reducing the chances of damage and simplifying extraction. The healthy and extra teeth can fuse together if you allow your child to start growing their adult teeth in before taking action to fix the problem. Many parents are wary of putting their child through surgical extractions at a young age, but they'll recover faster and experience less pain than if you wait until the teeth are larger and more crowded together.
Don't fret if you've let your child's extra teeth go without treatment because there's always a way to treat this kind of dental problem. Even teenagers nearing their 18 birthday can still have surgery to remove extra teeth, including any that have fused. Careful pediatric dental surgery divides the outer layers of teeth while leaving the roots intact and healthy. Don't wait until the teeth are developing serious cavities to decide to do something about your child's extra teeth.
Contact a dental office like Neu Family Dental Center for more information and assistance.