Hall Dental Centre

Exposing Impacted Teeth for Orthodontic Treatment

At Hall Dental, we offer services to expose impacted teeth and re-position them to aid in orthodontic treatment.


What is an impacted or unerupted tooth?

You may hear it called 'impacted' or 'unerupted' – they're the same thing. It means that a tooth has failed to fully pass through the gum tissues because something is preventing it from doing so.

Common Forms of Impacted Teeth

Wisdom teeth are the most common form of impacted teeth and they need to be removed. If a tooth fails to emerge, or emerges only partially, it is considered to be impacted.

Canines or eye teeth (maxillary cuspids) are the second most common teeth to become impacted. These teeth are the last of the “front teeth" to erupt and normally come into position around the age of 13.

If an upper cuspid becomes impacted, every effort is made to help it to erupt into position because these teeth play a crucial role in the dental arch. They are designed to be the first teeth to touch when your jaws are closed together and help guide your remaining teeth into the proper bite (occlusion). Other commonly impacted teeth include the second molars, bicuspids, and the lower jaw cuspids.

Early Detection & Orthodontic Consultations

Early detection of impacted teeth, other than wisdom teeth, is the key to successful treatment and can greatly prevent bigger issues in later years. Your Hall Dental team typically suggests an orthodontic consultation during routine clinical and radiographic examinations for patients around the age of 7 years old. Orthodontic treatment may be recommended to correct:

Extreme crowding

Too little space available causing an eruption problem of adult teeth.

Extra or missing adult teeth

What types of treatments are available for unerupted teeth?

The Extraction of a Primary Tooth: A primary tooth is extracted when it blocks a 'permanent' tooth from coming into the same space.

The Extraction of Extra Teeth: “Extra teeth" (supernumerary teeth) or growths are removed if they are blocking the eruption of a permanent tooth.

The Surgical Exposure of an unerupted tooth: Removal of gum tissue and bone overlying the tooth is removed to expose the impacted tooth underneath. This creates access for us to attach an orthodontic appliance to help the tooth erupt. Depending on the patient, we might place a periodontal packing (Barricaid) over the tooth where it will remain until a post operative appointment. Following surgery, we'll slowly move the exposed tooth into its proper position in the dental arch.

The Surgical Exposure of the impacted tooth and placement of an orthodontic bracket and chain to the exposed tooth: Elevation of gum tissue and removal of bone overlying the tooth is done to expose the impacted tooth underneath. Once the tooth is exposed, we'll bond an orthodontic bracket and chain to the exposed tooth. The chain will then be attached to the orthodontic appliance where it will remain temporarily. Again, depending on the patient need, we might place a periodontal packing (Barricaid) over the tooth where it will remain until your post operative appointment. Following surgery, we'll slowly move the exposed tooth into its proper position in the dental arch.

The Extraction of an unerupted tooth: This normally occurs in cases where a tooth will not move despite our best efforts. In a case like this, we'll discuss treatment options to replace the missing tooth in your dental arch.

Leaving an unerupted tooth alone: If the tooth is left in place, we'll discuss treatment options with you

Will I be Asleep During the Procedure?

There are several anesthetic options when undergoing surgical exposure of impacted teeth including:

Local Anesthesia

General Anesthesia (asleep)

Intravenous Sedation

If you have any questions about the treatment options for exposing impacted teeth, or have questions about any other dental matter please call (403) 380-3881 or click Contact Us.

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All services provided by general dentists: Dr. Paul Hall, Dr. Pauline Hall and Dr. Todd ZoBell