There are times when people are born missing one or more of their permanent teeth. When this happens, it means the person has congenitally missing teeth. These are permanent teeth that will never erupt, because these teeth never formed when they should have. If you recently found out from your child's dentist that he or she has congenitally missing teeth, you may want to know what your options are for fixing the problems that can occur from this. Here are the two main options you will have to choose from, and your dentist and an orthodontist can help you decide which option is right for your child.
Extraction And Braces
The first option your dentist may discuss with you is choosing to use braces to accommodate for this problem. With this option, you may need to get the teeth extracted before proceeding, but this is only necessary if the baby teeth do not fall out on their own. If they do fall out, there will be gaps in the child's mouth where the permanent teeth are supposed to be.
After the baby teeth in these areas have fallen out or have been extracted, you can take your child to an orthodontist to get braces. Braces are usually designed to straighten a child's teeth by putting the teeth in proper alignment, but braces can also be used to fill in gaps where teeth are missing.
An orthodontist will have to carefully examine the child's mouth to create a plan to fill in these gaps, and this plan might involve using temporary anchorage devices to help pull the back teeth forward. This is often the best way to close gaps; however, the orthodontist must make sure that he or she keeps the child's bite in proper alignment as the shifting of teeth occurs.
Here are some of the benefits offered by choosing this method to fix the problem:
- The problem will be fixed when the child is young, and he or she will never have to worry about it again.
- This method fixes the problem without having any negative effects on the child's teeth.
- This method also fixes the problem without having to use permanent types of dental products (such as bridges or implants).
Before you rush to an orthodontist to get this problem fixed, you might want to also consider the second way dentists may recommend treating congenitally missing teeth.
Dental Implants in the Future
The second option that you could consider using involves the use of dental implants or possibly even dental bridges at some point in the future. This option would work best if the baby teeth are still in place in the child's mouth and if the baby teeth have relatively strong roots holding them in place.
If you choose this method, the dentist would recommend leaving the baby teeth in place for as long as possible. In some cases, baby teeth can last a lifetime if they are cared for properly. Baby teeth do not usually fall out very quickly if there are no permanent teeth under them pushing them out. Because of this, there is a chance that your child could keep these teeth for a very long time and possibly for the rest of the child's life.
At some point, the baby teeth may, however, fall out or need to be extracted. When this happens, there would be gaps that need to be filled in, and a dentist could use dental implants to fill in those gaps.
If you are not sure which route to take, it might be wise to talk to a dentist like Rick Chavez DDS and an orthodontist to get advice from both.