Canine Substitution for Lateral Incisor
Whatever problem you have when you visit the orthodontist, it is likely that they will have seen it before and will not be shocked or put off by whatever you present to them. They are dealing with malformations and gaps where teeth are missing. Some are lost, but some of them are congenitally absent and one of the most common one to need replacing is a lateral incisor. When this is your problem, there are a number of ways to deal with it. The problem occurs when the teeth do not come through in the position they are supposed to be in because they are missing, and it will leave you with a smile that is far from perfect. There has recently been discussion regarding the treatment to follow and it has been hard to decide if the best way forward is to replace the tooth in its entirety or carry out restorative work to it. The orthodontist near you will have to examine the teeth to decide which of the three methods they are going to use to treat you. The three options are:
- Canine substitution
- Tooth supported restoration
- Single tooth implant
It is going to be a combination of issues that will help them decide including the malocclusion, the tooth size relationship, the space requirements as well as the canines shape and size. If excessive overjet is present and the mandible arch is not overcrowded, canine substitution should be considered. Also, canine substitution needs to be considered when there is mandibular overcrowding, and extraction will successfully provide the correct space required. If it will not, then another form should be considered.
The treatment they will want to carry out is the one that will give the best results, and this will mean the one that will look the best and allow normal function once in place. Very often, the option chosen will be canine substitution. It is important that the planning aspect is carried out correctly by a qualified orthodontist, as if mistakes are made here, it will be hard to correct them once the procedure starts.
As part of the planning, ensuring a correct overbite has to be taken into account. To ensure that this is the case, a dental wax up needs to be carried out and sometime digital pictures are taken. With a wax up, impressions are taken of both arches and models are made. Colored wax is placed on the model to get the look the orthodontist wants, and then they plan how to achieve it. This way you as a patient also get to see what the final outcome should be.
It is an orthodontist that will carry out the first part of the procedure and here they will put the canine teeth into lateral incisor position. It is then the turn of a restorative dentist. They will create a crown or porcelain veneer that appears the same as a normal lateral incisor. It will be the same shape and color and when positioned carefully, hard to tell from the real thing.