Are you scheduled to have a supernumerary tooth extracted? If your extra tooth doesn't cause you any pain nor negatively affect your appearance, you might be wondering if it's really necessary to have it removed. As a matter of fact, it is necessaryRead on to learn how a simple supernumerary tooth extraction now could save you from a lot of future dental and health problems:
33 Is A Crowd
The condition of having one or more extra teeth is called hyperdontia. It's a relatively common problem with between one and four percent of the population being affected. Most people with hyperdontia have only one extra tooth, however; the record sits with a young man from India who had an incredible 232 supernumerary teeth extracted!
So, why is your dentist worried about the single, seemingly perfectly fine extra tooth in your mouth? The reason your dentist has recommended that your supernumerary tooth be removed is because the adult mouth has room for 32 teeth, and any more than that will lead to crowding. What's the problem with tooth crowding? There are two main concerns -- malalignment and decay.
Malalignment And The Domino Effect
While your teeth may look okay now, your extra tooth can slowly and steadily press against its bordering teeth until it moves them out of their natural position. And, as the teeth nearest your supernumerary tooth begin to fall out of alignment, they'll slowly and steadily begin to push their bordering teeth out of alignment.
This domino effect can eventually lead to your entire bite being so out of whack that you have trouble chewing, and are left with no other option but to get fitted with dental braces to fix your teeth alignment.
What if you don't get braces? The joint that allows your mouth to open and close is called the temporomandibular joint, and it's one of the most complex joints in your body. It's cushioned by cartridge and a small shock-absorbing disk. When a malaligned bite goes untreated, this disk can become eroded, resulting in an extremely painful condition called temporomandibular joint disorder (TMJ).
An Avalanche Of Decay
Having an extra tooth can also make it more difficult to maintain proper dental hygiene. As your teeth become crowded, you can't reach all the way down to your gum line when flossing, so bacteria begins to accumulate and multiply there.
This bacteria eats away the enamel of your teeth, and a cavity is born. If not treated, the decay will develop into periodontal disease. Periodontal disease is the infection and erosion of the structures in your body that surround you teeth -- your gums and jawbone.
If you don't catch periodontal disease in time, your dentist may not be able to save your teeth. In this case, you'll need several tooth extractions before being fitted for dentures, and the force of your bite will decrease from 200 - 250 pounds of force down to about 50 pounds of force.
The Unexpected Consequences
Worse yet, once you develop periodontal disease, the bacteria reeking havoc on your gums and jawbone can make its way into your blood stream and affect your heart. In fact, those who have periodontal disease are twice as likely to develop coronary artery disease than those with healthy teeth and gums.
Bacteria can also spread to your lungs, causing pneumonia, and, if you're a man, periodontal disease can greatly increase your risk of developing pancreatic, kidney, and blood cancers.
While it may seem like an inconvenience to have a tooth removed when it isn't bothering you in any way, your supernumerary tooth extraction really is necessary. Go through with the extraction of your extra tooth, and know that the one simple procedure you're about to have performed can prevent you from a future full of dental discomfort and overall health problems.