Expose and Bond Treatment for an Impacted Tooth
An impacted tooth is a tooth that is unable to erupt through its natural growth path. Sometimes dental crowding, structures blocking the growth track, or other issues can cause teeth to become impacted. The canines, which sit on either side of your upper four front teeth, are some of the most likely to become impacted. When a tooth is impacted, an expose and bond procedure is performed to help the tooth properly erupt and function.
Our oral surgeons, Dr. Robert Wood, Dr. Nicholas Coles, Dr. Negin Saghafi, and Dr. Jerome Holbrook work with your dentist or orthodontist to manage an impacted canine tooth. If you or your child have an impacted canine, contact Arizona Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeons in Tucson or Oro Valley, AZ, today to schedule a consultation. We will thoroughly examine your condition and create a treatment plan to treat the impacted tooth and improve your oral health.
Early Detection and Treatment
Orthodontic treatments, such as braces, can prevent impacted canines. Having regular dental exams throughout childhood is an important part of preventing impaction and other oral health problems. The canine teeth usually don’t develop until about age 13-12, but most dental professionals recommend having a checkup with panoramic X-rays around age 7. This allows your dentist or orthodontist to make sure there will be enough space for the canines in the dental arch.
If necessary, your orthodontist can sometimes clear the path with braces. If there are retained baby teeth or other structures blocking the growth track, you may be referred to an oral surgeon to expose the impacted tooth. As long as the canines have room to grow in by age 11 or 12, they will probably erupt on their own.
It is not uncommon for wisdom teeth to become impacted. However, because wisdom teeth are not necessary for oral function and because there is often not enough room for them, these teeth are simply extracted. Canine teeth are essential for a healthy bite, therefore every effort is made to save them.
Treating Impacted Canines—Expose and Bond
When the canines do not have a clear eruption path before age 12 or so, the roots can begin to develop above the teeth. If the roots become too developed beneath the gums, the teeth won’t be able to erupt on their own, even if the path is cleared. In these cases, an oral surgeon may be called in to perform an exposure and bonding treatment.
During your first visit to our office, we will take 3D scans and discuss your options for anesthesia. As oral surgeons, we offer all types of anesthesia and sedation to ensure the comfort of you or your child.
Exposure and bonding is a team effort between the orthodontist and oral surgeon. Once your teeth have been prepared with braces, you will come in for the surgery procedure. After administering the appropriate anasthetic, your oral surgeon will expose the tooth that is trapped beneath the gums. Once exposed, a small bracket and chain will be attached to the tooth. After the procedure is over and the surgical sites have healed, your orthodontist will use this tiny chain along with your braces to gently pull the canines into their proper positions.
If impacted canines go untreated for many years (into adulthood), they may never be able to erupt into position. Later treatment for an impacted canine tooth may involve extracting the tooth and replacing it with a dental implant.
Our oral surgeons have years of experience treating patients of all ages for impacted canine teeth and third molars. To learn more about your treatment options, contact us in Tucson, AZ, or Oro Valley, AZ, for more information and to schedule your appointment with one of our skilled oral surgeons.
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We’ve been caring for patients in southern Arizona for over 50 years. As board-certified experts, our surgeons bring years of training and expertise to you and your loved ones with the highest standards. Learn more about our office or contact Arizona Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeons today to see how we can improve your oral health.