What’s An Impacted Tooth?
If your dentist in Douglasville tells you that you or your child has an impacted tooth, you may initially be a bit worried. But don’t fret. Impacted teeth are incredibly common. Even though impacted teeth are most often associated with wisdom teeth, the truth is any tooth can be impacted and can affect the development of the rest of your teeth and overall oral health.
An impacted tooth is essentially any tooth that doesn’t come in when and where it’s supposed to. Typically when someone loses a tooth, it’s because the adult tooth is pushing through the gums and is ready to make its appearance. However, this doesn’t always happen as planned. Sometimes a baby tooth falls out and other teeth crowd the area and block where the adult tooth is trying to erupt. Other times a baby tooth just doesn’t fall out when it should. This can cause an adult tooth to shift sideways and grow inside the gums instead of poking through the top.
What Causes Impacted Teeth?
As always, every case is different, but there are some top reasons why teeth may become impacted. One of the main causes of an impacted tooth is that a mouth is just too small for adult teeth to erupt as they’re supposed to. This is often the case with impacted wisdom teeth. When there’s not enough room in the mouth for new teeth to erupt, they can become impacted. Additionally, sometimes teeth simply do weird things and can grow sideways. There’s also a genetic factor at play. If a parent had an impacted tooth, the child is more likely to also have an impacted tooth.
Problems With Impacted Teeth
Impacted teeth can affect overall oral health and overall health in a variety of ways, including:
- Speech Problems
- Pain When Chewing
- Gum Problems
- Bone Loss
Luckily, your dentist in Douglasville can often see it coming thanks to dental x-rays. X-rays allow your dentist to take a closer look at the way teeth are erupting or have already erupted so we can make a plan for any situation.
How Do You Treat an Impacted Tooth?
First, it’s important to remember that an impacted tooth may not be an immediate cause for concern. After all, your dentist in Douglasville sees this every day, and is well-equipped to treat you in a comfortable and relaxing environment. Treatment of an impacted tooth will vary depending on your specific needs, how severe the impaction is, and how many teeth are affected. Some treatment options include:
- Extracting a stubborn baby tooth that’s in the way
- Orthodontic treatment to make room for adult teeth
- Palatal expander to create more space in the mouth for teeth
- Surgery to widen the jaw — this is the rarest treatment and only necessary for extreme situations
If the wisdom teeth are impacted, you may need to see a specialist to have them removed, but it’s incredibly important to extract impacted wisdom teeth. If they’re left untreated, they can cause pain as well as infection.
We understand that an impacted tooth may cause you to worry, but we’re here to help. Make sure to see your dentist at least twice a year for preventive checkups. The earlier an impacted tooth or potentially impacted tooth is caught, the treatment becomes easier. If it’s been longer than six months since your last dental appointment, we welcome you to schedule an appointment with us today.
What You Can Do If You Don’t Like Your Teeth
There is any number of reasons why you may not like the way your teeth look. Perhaps your teeth appear too long or short, or maybe they aren’t as white or straight as you’d like. No matter what you dislike about your smile, rest assured knowing that your dentist in Douglasville has numerous cosmetic and restorative dentistry options available to transform any ailment.
If You Want A Whiter Smile
Perhaps one of the most common complaints people have about their smile is how white their teeth are. That’s probably why smile whitening treatment is so popular. There are various types of teeth whitening products to choose from, but not all will necessarily give you the results you want or are even safe for your smile. If you want to get whiter teeth, talk with your dentist in Douglasville about a professional smile whitening treatment. These options are usually done in the dental office under the supervision of a dental professional, and they typically work faster than over-the-counter products.
If You Want A Straighter Smile
Another common desire for patients is to have super-straight teeth. Sometimes straightening teeth begins as a teen, but if retainers aren’t worn as recommended, teeth can shift and once again become crooked or overlapped. Other times an adult is simply ready to get the smile they’ve always wanted. Luckily, there are plenty of ways to straighten teeth, and not all of them involve traditional braces or orthodontics. Your dentist in Douglasville can straighten some teeth with dental veneers, clear aligners, or even dental crowns.
If You Want A More Even Smile
When someone feels that their teeth aren’t the correct size or shape to complement their smile, it can make them feel self-conscious. But again, there are several ways to change the size and shape of your teeth as well as ways to change how much gum tissue shows when you smile. Dental veneers that are custom-made can permanently change the size, shape, or color of an individual tooth or multiple teeth. Cosmetic bonding can also accomplish this. If your smile is too gummy, gum recontouring can change the shape of your gums and change your gum line.
If You Want A Full Smile
Missing a tooth or two isn’t an uncommon occurrence, and you’re not alone. But you may feel incomplete without a complete smile. That’s where your dentist in Douglasville can help. Missing teeth, no matter what the cause or how many are missing, can be replaced through various restorative dentistry treatments. The best way to replace missing teeth is with dental implants as they’re permanent and help stimulate the jaw bone. Other options include either partial or full dentures, dental bridges, or a flipper.
With so many different options available to transform the appearance of teeth, there’s no time like the present to finally get the smile you’ve always wanted. Start by scheduling a consultation with your dentist to review the areas that bother you and develop a treatment plan just for you.