The boy shows his X-ray image of his teeth with an abnormally strange extra tooth. Children's dentistry. Patient Orthodontist

When you get your teeth corrected with braces or Invisalign, you may end up running into some issues if you have supernumerary teeth. However, this doesn’t mean you won’t be able to get the smile you’ve always wanted. An experienced, qualified orthodontist will be able to come up with a treatment plan to get you your perfect smile if you have supernumerary teeth or any other complications.

What Are Supernumerary Teeth?

The term “supernumerary teeth” simply refers to any amount of teeth more than what is normal. Typically, adults have 32 permanent teeth and kids have 20 baby teeth. Any extra tooth is labeled as a supernumerary tooth. Also called “hyperdontia, this condition isn’t common, but it certainly isn’t unheard of, and orthodontists in Charleston need to be prepared to deal with supernumerary teeth in patients who want a new smile.

Supernumerary teeth occur for a variety of possible reasons, including genetic disorders like Gardner’s syndrome. People with down syndrome or who were born with a cleft lip can sometimes have supernumerary teeth as well.

Potential Problems Caused by Supernumerary Teeth

Because the jaw is designed to only hold 32 permanent teeth, having extras can pose some issues. One of the biggest concerns is impaction, which is when teeth fail to erupt and are stuck beneath the gum line. Another common problem with supernumerary teeth is excessive crowding. People’s jaws often don’t have enough room for the normal 32 teeth as it is, which is why people experience crookedness and crowding. So you can imagine why adding more teeth to the mix would only make things worse.

Supernumerary teeth have also been known to fuse with the other permanent teeth. Other problems associated with extra teeth include problems breathing, eating, and speaking clearly. Generally, people with supernumerary teeth are also more vulnerable to tooth decay and cavities due to crowding.

Dealing with Supernumerary Teeth

If young kids have supernumerary teeth, the problem can be addressed with early orthodontics either by preventing impaction and making it easier for the tooth to be extracted later on, or by simply extracting the extra tooth right away.

After supernumerary teeth are removed, the empty space will need to be filled in. This is done using orthodontic treatment like braces or Invisalign. With the severe spacing issues that are likely to occur with supernumerary teeth, traditional braces will likely be required. Braces will move the rest of the teeth into their correct positions, filling in the space left by the extracted tooth and eliminating and crowding. After the teeth are straightened, not only will there be less of a risk of tooth decay, but any bite problems will also be fixed as well.

If you want to learn more about early orthodontics or learn about how orthodontic treatment can fix issues with your smile, contact Charleston Orthodontic Specialists today to schedule your free consultation, or start a virtual consultation using the SmileSnap button on the bottom left of the page.