An impacted tooth is a tooth that does not properly erupt. After the wisdom teeth, the most commonly impacted teeth are the canine teeth. The canine teeth are incredibly important, helping you to chew properly and framing your smile to give you a more aesthetic appearance. Impacted canine teeth can also cause damage to the adjacent teeth, leading to tooth loss or the development of other problems around the tooth, such as cysts or tumors. One of the treatments our periodontist may recommend to treat an impacted canine tooth is exposure and bonding.
Canine exposure and bonding involves uncovering the impacted tooth and bonding an orthodontic attachment to it. This attachment is connected to a small chain, usually made of gold, and a rubber band. The chain and band work to apply gentle traction and pressure to help the tooth erupt and move into the correct position in the mouth. This is a slow, careful process and may take up to a full year to complete.
Once the tooth has moved into the arch and into its final position, our periodontist will evaluate the surrounding gum tissue to ensure that it is strong and healthy enough to allow you to chew and brush normally. In some circumstances, our periodontist may recommend minor gum surgery to improve the health of your gum tissue so that you can continue normal oral functions without fear that your supporting gum tissue will deteriorate or recede.
For more information about canine exposure and to schedule a consultation with our periodontist, call our office today.