When a tooth is unable to erupt from the gum and function properly, it’s called an impacted tooth. Patients frequently develop problems with teeth becoming impacted in the back of the jaw, which often results in painful infections and other issues.
Commonly Impacted Teeth
Wisdom teeth frequently become impacted and are often the most extracted tooth. Next comes the maxillary cuspid (upper eyetooth). This tooth is critical in the dental arch and is significant when it comes to an individual’s bite. They have some of the longest roots out of all of the teeth, and are necessary for eating and chewing properly.
When a Tooth Cannot Erupt
In cases where eyeteeth won’t erupt spontaneously, a combined effort between an orthodontist and oral surgeon is necessary to correct the issue. Typically braces are used to open a space for the impacted tooth to shift and emerge in the proper position.
Surgical Maneuvers Performed with Dexterity
A simple surgical procedure is performed to lift the gum tissue that rests on top of an impacted tooth. This exposes the underlying tooth, which can be removed if it is still a baby version. If an adult tooth is exposed, then an oral surgeon bonds an orthodontic bracket to it. Here at our practice, we attach a gold chain to the bracket and guide the chain to a nearby arch wire. The gum is then returned to its position and sutured so only the chain remains visible. This helps the impacted tooth erupt.
Proper Placement of Tooth
Over the next few weeks, our office then initiates a process where the tooth can be moved to the right place in the dental arch. This process can take up to a year and is delicate work that needs to be performed by a professional at Bellflower Oral Facial Surgery & Dental Implant Center.
If only one tooth requires exposure and bracketing, then the procedure can be completed in 75 minutes. If two need to be done, then 105 minutes. An even shorter procedure occurs if the tooth just needs to be exposed without bracketing.
After a tooth has been moved to its final position, the surrounding gum tissue is elevated. Occasionally minor gum surgery is needed to augment the tissue over the relocated area. This is done to promote healthy functionality in the area.
This is a quick procedure to recover from, with patients typically not requiring any pain medication 2-3 days after surgery. It is possible to experience swelling near the lip, which can be minimized with ice packs.
We’ll discuss everything in detail during your preoperative consultation with Dr. Adamous or Dr. Sonnichsen. Contact Bellflower Oral Facial Surgery & Dental Implant Center today to learn if you can benefit from our surgical dental procedures such as treatment for impacted teeth anywhere in the dental arch.