What are impacted canines? Skip to main content

What are impacted canines?

While many patients have heard of impacted wisdom teeth, they’re not the only teeth that can become impacted. Other teeth can also remain stuck under the surface of your gums due to crowding or having a small mouth.

Upper cuspid teeth, or canines, are the “I” teeth on the corners of the mouth. They are the second most common teeth in your mouth to become impacted.

In this post, we’ll talk about how impacted canines can affect your smile and how they can be treated.

Exposure and bonding

Treating impacted canine teeth requires a joint effort between an oral surgeon and an orthodontist. First, an oral surgeon exposes the canine tooth by moving the gum tissue and bone surrounding it. While exposed, a bracket and gold chain is installed to the tooth while also securing the chain to the braces wire. This procedure is typically performed under sedation for patient comfort. The orthodontist will then see the patient on a subsequent visit, and gradually pull the canine into the correct position using rubber bands.

Patience and time

Full treatment time can take several months or longer, so patients should try to keep the long-term benefits in mind when going through the treatment period. Once treatment is complete, a patient can enjoy their new and improved smile for the rest of their life.

Pre and postop instructions

Always follow your oral surgeon’s pre and postop instructions to lower your risk of complications. Typically, the surgery is performed on an outpatient basis unless extenuating circumstances require an inpatient procedure.

Early diagnosis is key

The sooner impacted cuspids are noticed and treated, the better. If your child’s dentist is concerned that their cuspids may be having difficulty coming in, you should meet with a specialist for an in-depth examination.

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