The primary teeth, also called the baby teeth, must shed naturally so the permanent teeth beneath can erupt into the gums. Once the permanent tooth’s eruption is delayed for over a year from the supposed date, it is considered as over-retained. It is necessary to keep track of every primary tooth loss.

The first thing you should do is to wait for the baby teeth to eventually lose. If gum infection and pain become an issue so chewing and brushing or flossing as an ordeal, then removing the tooth could be necessary.

In some cases, baby teeth become loose and tighten again since the erupting permanent teeth starts to deflect from the supposed position in the dental arch. If the primary tooth become tight again and the permanent tooth is deflected, it may be best to remove the primary tooth. Some kids suffering from this have this problem repeatedly with their other teeth while other only have one or two teeth affected.

The most common cases of over-retained baby teeth are the primary maxillary second molar and the maxillary primary canine. Further, the most frequently missing adult teeth are the maxillary lateral incisors and the mandibular second premolar. Because of the absence of second premolars, the primary second molars usually will be over-retained. They usually remain to adulthood before requiring removal.

The cause of missing teeth isn’t completely known. It could be a genetic component but factors such as trauma, endocrine disorders and environmental elements can be considered.

Cause of Over-Retained Teeth

It is important to have the child’s teeth carefully assessed by a pediatric dentist. The color, shape, condition and position of the baby teeth is important to evaluate. There’s a chance that the baby tooth may be fused to the bone, a condition called ankylosis. This hinders shedding of baby tooth.

There are several reasons for the baby teeth to be over-retained. The most common reasons is when the permanent tooth are absent, which normally push the root of the baby tooth. Other reasons for over-retained baby teeth are obstructions, pathology, trauma, infection, misalignment of permanent tooth and late eruption of permanent tooth.

Treatment Options for Over-Retained Baby Teeth

Treatment options for over-retained primary teeth will depend on the condition of the baby tooth and its adjacent structures. If there are several over-retained teeth, there may be a number of missing permanent teeth. It is important that an orthodontist must see the child so a proper treatment plan can be developed.

If the baby tooth is aesthetically and structurally acceptable, the tooth can be retained. But if the tooth isn’t structurally and aesthetically acceptable, it can be retained and reshaped through restoration means.

When the baby tooth is crooked, it is better to remove it as the space between can be closed through braces. It can also be replaced by a dental implant or fixed bridge.

It is clearly important to always have your child’s baby teeth checked by a dental professional so that dental issues such as over-retained baby teeth can be recognized as soon as possible. An early treatment will definitely improve the result.