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Impacted Canines

As we lose our baby teeth or milk teeth, the permanent teeth slowly replace the baby teeth. This process for most part is uneventful and nature has designed a very clever system of replacement as the jaws grow and there is more space for more teeth.

Occasionally the expected process of losing the baby teeth and replacing them with permanent teeth is disrupted by retaining the baby teeth for longer than expected, impeding the gradual descent of the permanent teeth. This is more common with upper jaw canine teeth that are essential for effective chewing and biting into food. This delay or impediment is called impaction.

The impacted canines are helped by first removing the retained baby teeth and then guiding the canines into its expected place in the jaw. The teaming up of general dentist, orthodontist, and oral and facial surgeon makes this process possible. After the diagnosis, the orthodontist starts braces and the oral surgeon first removes the retained baby tooth, surgically exposes the impacted canine and places a bracket that is connected to the main line of the braces. Then, the orthodontist slowly and gradually applies appropriate guided force to the impacted canine and eventually brings it into occlusion (the right place with proper contact with other opposing teeth).

This process is term exposure and attachment of bracket and chain. To get more information ask your dentist, orthodontist or surgeon. Please visit our website for more detailed information.

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