DENTAL HEALTH UPDATE by Andrew Biffen DMD

CONGENITALLY MISSING TEETH

When teeth are missing as a result of failing to develop at birth, it is referred to as hypodontia. The most common congenitally missing teeth are the wisdom teeth (25-35 percent), followed by the permanent upper lateral incisors (two percent), and the second premolars (three percent The problem this condition poses is that it removes a tooth from the dental arch that normally keeps adjacent teeth in their proper places. For instance, when the upper lateral incisors are missing, the canine (cuspid or “eye”) teeth are apt to move toward the central incisors to fill the gap. In order to identify and deal effectively with such dental abnormalities, it is important to have regular dental checkups.

Don’t let dental abnormalities keep you from smiling, chewing, talking, and just generally enjoying life. There are many strategies available today to solve the problems caused by missing teeth. We’ll be happy to discuss which ones would be best for your circumstances. Office hours are by appointment.

P.S. Congenitally missing teeth is a condition that tends to appear within families and also may be influenced by environmental factors.

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