‘Tooth eruption” is a word used by dental professionals to describe the process of a tooth developing under the gums and moving into the mouth where it can be seen. Factors that change the normal spacing between your teeth can result in an abnormal eruption. Typically, cases are the result of abnormal timing of when milk teeth are lost and permanent teeth come in.
Examples of An Abnormal Eruption
There are a number of instances where an abnormal eruption can occur.
For instance, if you lose a milk tooth too early, other teeth can drift and change the spacing in your mouth. On the other hand, if a milk tooth is too slow to resorb and fall out, it can block a permanent tooth’s path.
Other examples include:
More permanent teeth than normal – this is a condition called hyperdontia
Not having the usual number of milk teeth which can change the spacing in your mouth
Having a jaw or mouth injury
Having a cyst or other obstruction form in the jaw
A small jaw with not enough space for all your teeth
An Eruption Timeline
By the time they are around 3, most children have all 20 milk teeth (10 upper and 10 lower). These teeth start to fall out to be replaced by adult teeth at around 6 or 7 years of age. By about the age of 13, all your primary teeth have usually been replaced by permanent teeth. You also get additional molars at the ages of around 6, 12 and after around 18 (these last molars; or wisdom teeth may not come in at all). There are usually 32 adult teeth in total.
Considering Your Options
An orthodontist can identify if you or your child have abnormal eruption. Your orthodontist can tell you what your options are after a thorough examination. The treatment for an abnormal eruption depends on where in your mouth the abnormal eruption is and what’s blocking the way.
Before the adult teeth come in, the milk teeth must fall out. As we’ve said, most children start to lose their baby teeth around the age of 6 or 7 years old. Typically, baby teeth wiggle out on their own, but sometimes a few may hang on longer than others.
In cases where baby teeth are already loose but remain attached to the gums, you might experience discomfort and find it hard to clean this area. What’s more, a stubborn baby tooth can negatively affect the eruption of an adult tooth. Sometimes the roots of milk teeth fail to dissolve, and they remain firmly fixed in place while the adult teeth beneath start to head off-course.
Off-course adult teeth may remain trapped in the gums, or come through in an unsuitable location. In some cases they can damage the roots of nearby adult teeth.
To prevent an abnormal eruption and make room for adult teeth, the baby tooth may need to be extracted.
Getting teeth pulled can be a scary prospect, but there are ways to make it much easier for you. From numbing gel to laughing gas, dentists have an array of options available to ensure that the process is as smooth and easy as possible.
Teeth that are significantly ‘off course’ from their proper location may need early orthodontic intervention to prevent larger problems down the track. This intervention may be very simple – for example a passive appliance to hold space in the jaws for the erupting tooth.
Fixing Your Smile
If your child does need braces, technology has come a long way and it may not be necessary to use metal braces and headsets. Today, you can often choose clear ceramic braces and even invisible aligners for your child.
If you had abnormal eruption as a child that has resulted in bite problems and misaligned teeth, achieving a straighter smile is easier and more affordable than ever before.
After a consultation, we can determine the best course of treatment for you, your child and your budget. Whether you’re self-conscious about your smile and would prefer a discreet treatment, or you require more extensive orthodontic treatment to achieve a beautiful grin, we have plenty of solutions.
With prompt attention, abnormal eruption doesn’t have to cause lasting damage or self-consciousness.
Book a free* consultation with the team at Fine Orthodontics today to discuss the way forward and achieve a healthy, happy smile today!
*If orthodontic X-rays are required, a fee of $180 applies. See Terms and Conditions. Treatment may not be suitable for you.
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