Safety Measures

Expose and Bond

Expose an Unerupted Tooth in the Dental Arch

A tooth is considered to be impacted when it cannot properly emerge through the gums. Wisdom teeth are the most commonly impacted teeth, followed by canine teeth. Wisdom teeth are simply removed, but canine teeth have essential functions and need to be a part of the dental arch. Canines are crucial for biting and chewing, and they must be properly aligned. An impacted tooth is often discovered during routine X-rays at your dentist’s office, so it’s important to attend regular checkups so that these types of problems can be found and treated early.

Causes and Risks of an Impacted Tooth

Canines begin developing around age 10 and finish growing during the early teen years. Several things can cause an impacted tooth, such as:

  • Not enough room in the jaw for a tooth to fit in the dental arch
  • A tooth can’t follow the path alongside adjacent teeth to erupt properly
  • Genetics

Without treatment from a professional, an impacted tooth is unlikely to ever erupt into its proper place. It will remain trapped beneath the gums, which poses a threat to oral health.

  • An impacted tooth can damage the roots of nearby teeth.
  • Cysts or tumors can form around the tooth.
  • In the rare case an impacted tooth erupts on its own, it can push other teeth out of alignment.
  • Impacted teeth can cause pain when eating, bad breath, or a bad taste in the mouth.
  • Gums may become red or swollen and may frequently bleed.

Treating an Impacted Tooth With an Expose and Bond Procedure

After it’s determined that you have an impacted tooth, your oral surgeon and orthodontist will work together to expose the impacted tooth, bond a bracket and chain to it, and move it to its proper position in the dental arch. When you come to see us, we will take 3D CBCT scans to get a clear picture of your condition, as well as discuss your anesthesia and sedation options. Our office also utilizes advanced sterilization equipment for our surgical instruments, which reduces the risk of cross-contamination.

Dr. Foxson will make an incision in your gum to expose the impacted tooth. A bracket is attached to the tooth and connected to other brackets or anchors that your orthodontist will have already inserted. You will visit your orthodontist as needed to track your progress and ensure the tooth is steadily moving into its correct position. The duration of this treatment will depend on the severity of your condition and if any other procedures are required, such as extracting a tooth or other orthodontic services.

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