Dental Tips Blog


Retained Baby Teeth (When An Adult Tooth Is Missing)

Posted in Dental Implants

From time to time, some growing children will experience the lack of permanent tooth development in one of their teeth. Typically, the missing adult tooth is one of the premolars (bicuspids) that would have replaced a primary (baby) molar. As a result, the primary molar never falls out with the rest of their baby teeth, and stays in place for several more years.

Unfortunately, baby teeth are not designed to withstand a lifetime of use. In the most positive outcomes, retained primary molars may last until the person is around 30 years of age. At this point it typically no longer has healthy root support and becomes mobile and falls out. Dedicated oral hygiene, including daily flossing, is necessary to extend the life of these teeth to this point.

Eventually, these teeth are lost and will need to be replaced. An open space between healthy teeth can cause drifting of teeth throughout the mouth, including the opposite arch. Having a game plan in advance can prepare patients for their tooth replacement option before the day arrives. Options for tooth replacement and space maintenance typically include dental implants or a fixed bridge. If the tooth is lost very early in a person’s life, a removable flipper or partial can be worn until the rest of the mouth is fully developed.

Adults that have missing teeth may pass the condition on to their children. Seeing the dentist regularly is important. Monitoring the eruption patterns of the teeth can easily be done through routine radiographs like panoramic films or bitewing x-rays. Children, just like adults, should see their dentist twice a year to monitor oral health conditions that relate to decay and the development of their permanent teeth.

Posted of the behalf of Justin Scott



Retained Baby Teeth

Posted in Dental Implants

Some people have baby teeth that they don’t lose when they were children. These teeth are called “retained” teeth, and typically refer to when the permanent tooth meant to replace the baby tooth never develops, or is impacted and fails to erupt into place. Retained baby teeth can stay in place several years, but will typically fall out by the time an adult reaches their 30s.

Baby teeth are designed to only last into the early adolescent years. They wear down much quicker than permanent teeth, and have a shorter root structure, which prevents them from being anchored into the jaw for an extended period of time. Natural root resorption is part of the process your body uses to expel baby teeth, but it is stalled when a permanent tooth is not pushing the tooth out as well. Once the root has resorbed to a certain point, it becomes mobile and unstable for normal use.

Dedicated care to the gums around retained baby teeth can help them stay in place longer, but it will not prevent them from being lost. Eventually all retained baby teeth will need to be replaced using options such as dental implants, bridges or removable appliances. By placing a permanent restoration such as a dental implant in this area, the function of the tooth is restored and the rest of your smile is protected. Even the loss of one tooth can cause other teeth in the mouth to drift out of place, creating areas where food packs, teeth appear crooked, or teeth that erupt and become taller than others due to nothing to bite against.

Ask your Atlanta dental implants dentist about what tooth replacement options are most appropriate for you.

Posted on behalf of Mountain View Oral Surgery and Dental Implants


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