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Impacted Canine – St. Louis, MO

Treating an Impacted Canine

Sterile dental office to treat an impacted canine. When you think of an impacted tooth, the wisdom teeth might come to mind. While it’s common for the third molars to have difficulty erupting properly, there are other teeth that may struggle to break through the surface as well. The maxillary canines, also known as the upper eye teeth, can also be impacted. If the issue isn’t corrected, it can lead to a variety of complications, including the formation of cysts or tumors. Thankfully, you can save your smile from the complications of an impacted canine with the help of your dentist. Dr. Moreland will create the customized plan you need.

Why Choose Dr. Stewart E. Moreland?

  • Board-certified in oral and maxillofacial surgery.
  • Diplomate status from the American Board of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery.
  • State-of-the-art technology.

What are Impacted Canines and Teeth?

Dentists treating an impacted canine.

An impacted tooth occurs when it doesn’t erupt through the gum tissue properly, either fully or partially. Canines are the 2nd most common teeth to be impacted, only surpassed by the wisdom teeth. While anyone can suffer from an impacted canine, it’s more likely to affect females than males.

The most common cause for the impaction is from the jaw being too small to accommodate all the teeth, causing the canines to be trapped on the roof of the mouth. There is also some evidence there can be a genetic component as well.

Diagnosis of Impacted Teeth

Woman in dental chair after procedure.

Specific teeth erupt at certain times throughout life. Around the age of 5, the primary teeth will begin to be replaced by the permanent teeth. If a canine doesn’t erupt, it’s normal to be concerned about an impaction.

Dr. Moreland will take various X-rays to view the tooth’s relation to the jaw and the adjacent teeth to look for any abnormalities. In some cases, a CT scan may also be recommended to view a 3D image of the tooth. Based on the information, an oral surgeon may be needed to free the tooth.

Problems from Impacted Teeth

Your canines are visible when smiling, so it’s easy to feel insecure about your smile if either canine is trapped under the gum tissue. Unfortunately, your self-esteem isn’t the only thing to suffer the consequences of the impaction. In some cases, the primary tooth may not fall out. While there will be a tooth filling the space, it will not be the same shape or size as the adjacent adult teeth.

The impacted tooth can also cause damage to the adjacent teeth. It can also lead to alignment issues because the permanent teeth will be pushed from their ideal positions. If the impaction isn’t resolved, it can also cause cysts or tumors.

Treatment of Impacted Teeth

Treating an impacted canine varies depending on the severity of the issue. Common options include:

  • Gingivectomy to open the gum tissue to expose the tooth.
  • A flap to expose the tooth while leaving a healthy band of tissue.
  • Exposure and bonding uncover the tooth and bonds an orthodontic attachment to reposition the tooth.

Although it’s best to have an impacted canine treated during childhood, it’s never too late to have the issue corrected. Contact our office today to schedule your consultation.