Oral and dental care must begin while the baby is still in the process of teething. This is often regarded as a critical developmental milestone where baby deciduous teeth erupt from the gums. By the time the child reaches school-age, his deciduous milk teeth are replaced, one by one, by permanent dense adult teeth. The last set of teeth ever to erupt are the third molars or wisdom teeth.
Unfortunately, some kids’ wisdom teeth do not erupt well out from the gums. That means they remain inside the gums and as such are called impacted teeth. This will usually occur by 9 years old although a great number of cases have it at age 17 to 21. If the molars are not impacted, it is the maxillary canines that get impacted.
Is Impacted Teeth Dangerous?
Fortunately, an impacted teeth do not produce any problem. However, there have been cases where the impaction has resulted in headaches as well as mouth pain. Sometimes, the gums can appear red or swollen. If such a manifestation is observed it is important to bring the child to a pediatrician immediately.
Should it be Treated?
Some people do not recommend treating an impacted tooth, especially if it is not producing any pain or problem. However, many dentists recommend treatment regardless of whether there are associated problems or not. This is in order to prevent damage to the root structure of the second molar or the adjacent teeth. Additionally, treatment is indicated to allow full dental functionality and prevent premature excessive wear of the adjacent teeth.
How is Impacted Teeth Treated?
The treatment procedure involved in managing impacted teeth is called exposure and bracketing. Here, the impacted tooth is exposed through an incision through the gums. An orthodontic bracket is then bonded onto the exposed tooth then connected to an orthodontic arch wire. After about two weeks, the entire orthodontic arch will be slowly pulled out in order to place the impacted tooth in its proper place. You should understand that this is an ongoing process and can take up to a year before the impacted tooth is in its normal anatomical position.
Impacted teeth are a common occurrence, according to Scottwgrantdmd.com. Sometimes it is so common that kids don’t even know they have impacted teeth. It is for this reason that regular dental checkups must be performed to make sure that everything is in order.