Canine teeth extraction: What happens with impacted canine teeth in Orthodontics?

Canine teeth extraction is performed mainly on the upper jaw (maxilla). A canine tooth is considered impacted when it has not appeared in the mouth past its normal and expected eruption period. Impacted canine teeth are treated with orthodontic intervention (canine teeth extraction, orthodontics, or surgery). They affect children, teenagers, and adults. The orthodontist will examine the condition of the canine teeth and move on to suggest the appropriate treatment. Before treatment, it is essential that your orthodontist requests you to have a panoramic dental x-ray. You need to know that early diagnosis of impacted canines is the key to a successful treatment. In any case, this is a fairly common phenomenon, observed in 2% of the population. The incidence of impacted canine teeth, possibly leading to canine teeth removal, is twice as high in girls and is familial. In our orthodontic practice you can also get to learn about the Invisalign method, Lingual Orthodontics, and Invisible Orthodontics.

Does the presence of impacted canines automatically imply canine teeth extraction?

No. Canine teeth extraction will only be performed if necessary. In any case, the orthodontic intervention that will be followed to treat impacted canines depends on various factors. More specifically, the questions to be asked are: where is the canine tooth located? Is it in the upper or lower jaw? What is the chronological and dental age of the patient? A common phenomenon is to have a canine erupt when it was thought it would never happen. This often happens due to a poor assessment of the child’s dental age. However, it is necessary to have the necessary orthodontic investigation before selecting the appropriate treatment. What you need to know is that the duration of treatment varies depending on the severity and specificity of the case.
The most common treatment interventions are:

  1. Canine tooth extraction in deciduous teeth
  2. Orthodontics
  3. Surgical exposure with or without orthodontic traction
  4. Surgical autologous graft transplant – repositioning
  5. Surgical extraction

What are the causes of canine impaction?

The reasons why a canine tooth is impacted may vary. Treatment of an impacted canine may not require canine tooth extraction but may require some other type of orthodontic intervention. The most common causes of impaction are as follows:

● Obstacles during the eruption of the canine. Crowding of the dentition, dental fusion, solid bone, thick fibrous tissue, and fibromatosis. Crowding of the dentition is quite common in children, adolescents, and adults. It is due to genetic causes, or it may also be caused by dental interventions (e.g. caries).
● The ectopic position of a tooth as a cause of it being impacted. The position of the jaw is perhaps the most important factor in the eruption of a canine tooth, and it is determined by genetic factors. The problem which is often noted is that the canine teeth of the upper jaw grow too high inside the bone and have to travel a long distance to erupt.
● Malfunctioning mechanism of the canine eruption. This is a complex mechanism based on cellular processes and can often malfunction, due to injury.

Extraction of canine teeth when impacted, and early diagnosis

Canine teeth play a key role in the proper functioning of dental occlusion. Therefore, it is necessary for them to erupt in their proper place. It is recommended that children visit their orthodontist at the age of 8 years old. This age is crucial, as it is important to take a detailed medical history and perform a through physical examination. The orthodontist follows this procedure, so that any abnormalities that prevent the canine teeth from erupting can be diagnosed. Still, it is necessary to investigate any possible trauma that may affect the eruption of the canine. Assessment of the child’s dental age is also performed. The next examination is suggested to take place at 11 years of age. X-ray imaging may be needed; quite possibly, too, computed tomography may also be necessary. Your orthodontist is the right person to inform you if you need to have a canine tooth extracted or exposed. In the video below, we provide extensive information regarding the various methods of orthodontic treatment of impacted canines. Visit our orthodontic practice to consult with the Orthodontist Dr. Fotis V. Exarchou for more information.

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