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Surgery for Hyperdontia, or Extra Teeth

The condition of having extra teeth (also referred to as supernumerary teeth) is called hyperdontia. The first 20 teeth that grow when you are a child are deciduous teeth. These are your primary teeth that are then replaced by 32 permanent teeth in your teen and adult years.

When extra teeth are present, they are usually primary teeth and may be found anywhere on the U-shaped surfaces in the mouth known as the dental arches.

What are the Symptoms of Hyperdontia?

The most obvious symptom of hyperdontia is extra teeth that are found very close to or directly around other teeth. Having extra teeth is usually painless unless the extra teeth or other teeth around it are overcrowded or there are other complications.

If the extra teeth are visible, they are described as having “erupted”. If they are not visible and are below the gum line, they are described as “impacted”. The most common occurrence is to have a single extra tooth that is impacted. Up to 98% of people with extra teeth have them located in their upper jaw.

Although it’s most common to have a single extra tooth, supernumerary teeth can also include two or more extra teeth. However, less than 1% of all cases of hyperdontia include more than two extra teeth. The extra teeth may be found in the upper jaw, lower jaw, or both.

What Causes Someone to Have Extra Teeth?

Having extra teeth may be related to a number of hereditary conditions and environmental factors but in some people, the cause is unknown. Some hereditary conditions predisposing a person to extra teeth include:

  • Cleft lip or cleft palate – These congenital conditions occur before a baby is born and affect how the mouth and lip are formed.
  • Nance-Horan syndrome – This condition results in cataracts and dental problems.
  • Cleidocranial dysplasia – Bones in the collar area and skull do not form properly with this hereditary condition.
  • Fabry disease – This disorder is caused by a deficiency of the enzyme alpha-galactosidase A and can affect many parts of the body including teeth, skin, heart, kidneys, and brain.
  • Trichorhinophalangeal syndrome – This congenital disorder results in the malformation of joints and bones. It is also characterized by problems with the growth and development of teeth, skin, and hair.
  • Gardner’s syndrome – This disorder causes non-cancerous growths to develop in different parts of the body, especially the bowel, and a predisposition for colorectal cancer.
  • Ehlers-Danlos syndrome – With this condition, faulty collagen production results in abnormal development of connective tissue in the body. This causes joint and muscle pain, loose joints, scoliosis, and skin that bruises easily.

How does a dentist know you have extra teeth?

If the extra teeth have erupted, they are clearly visible and easy to identify. If the supernumerary teeth are impacted, your dentist will be able to see them when they x-ray your mouth. If your dentist has other concerns about your jaw, mouth, or teeth, they may also perform a CT scan of these areas as well.

What is the treatment for extra teeth?

Hyperdontia is treated by removing the extra teeth that are present. Extra teeth removal is usually done if there is:

  • A hereditary condition causing the extra teeth to appear
  • Difficulty chewing or eating
  • Difficulty cleaning and flossing between teeth
  • Interference with the eruption of permanent teeth
  • Likelihood of crowding or crooked teeth
  • Injury to the mouth from the extra teeth

Supernumerary teeth may also be removed for aesthetic reasons if a person is self-conscious about how they look.

If extra teeth that have emerged through the gumline and are visible and easily accessible, a simple extraction may be the only treatment required to remove them. If the supernumerary teeth are impacted below the gumline, hyperdontia surgery may be needed to remove them.

Your dentist will be able to tell you if they are able to remove your extra teeth or if they recommend hyperdontia surgery for removal.

If you need to have extra teeth surgically removed, Peak OMS offers the services you need. To set up an appointment, call our office at (303) 232-5637 or book a dental extraction appointment online.

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