Similar to wisdom teeth, canine teeth sometimes have difficulty erupting and become impacted. Also called cuspids or eye teeth, they are usually the last adult teeth to erupt. Impaction of these teeth is often the result of dental crowding, lack of space, or failure of a primary/baby tooth to fall out. Canines are important teeth not only for chewing, but also contribute to speech, esthetics, and provide structural support for the surrounding hard and soft tissues.
Treatment for impacted canines is often easier and more successful the earlier it is identified. If these teeth do not erupt naturally, typically an orthodontist and oral and maxillofacial surgeon will collaborate to examine and determine the best treatment for each patient. This procedure typically involves the oral surgeon exposing the impacted tooth and placing a small orthodontic appliance on the tooth that will be used to guide the tooth into its proper position by the orthodontist. The position of the teeth and the degree of impact can vary greatly between individuals. The surgeons at Oral & Maxillofacial Surgical Consultants will help explain the findings and treatment options for each patient on an individual basis.