How Orthodontists Handle Congenitally Missing Teeth

When a dentist finds out that a child has congenitally missing teeth, it means that he or she has permanent teeth that are not there and never will be. This condition is called hypodontia and is a common condition. When a child is missing one or more teeth, you must talk to a dentist or orthodontist to find out what you should do about it. There are several different options to treat this problem, and here are the main two solutions used by orthodontists and dentists.

Leave the baby teeth in place and treat the problem later

The first option you have is to leave the baby teeth in place that do not have any permanent teeth underneath them. Baby teeth do not fall out nearly as fast if there are no permanent teeth erupting under them. Because of this, many orthodontists will suggest just leaving the baby teeth in place. If you choose this option and the child cares well for his or her teeth, the baby teeth could possibly last for the person's entire life.

If the baby teeth eventually fall out or have to be removed for any reason, you could worry about what to do about them then. This may not happen until the person is 30 years old or much older, and there are a lot of great tooth-replacement options that could be used at that time.

Remove the baby teeth and fill the gaps with braces

The other option to consider is having the baby teeth removed from the child's mouth. If you do not want your child to have to deal with replacing gaps in the future, this would be a good route for you to consider. If you have them removed, you could visit an orthodontist for braces. With braces, an orthodontist would be able to pull the other teeth into the gaps to fill them up. One benefit of using this option is that it eliminates problems with overcrowding teeth. Another benefit is that it may help the person's wisdom teeth grow in straighter, and there might even be enough room for the wisdom teeth to grow in and stay in place. Additionally, using this method solves the problem right now instead of postponing it into the future.

If your child has congenitally missing teeth, you should visit an orthodontist office like Donald E. Snyder Orthodontics to get advice about the situation and to learn all the options available for treatment.