Our Specialties – Canine Exposure for Orthodontics
Canine exposure is a term that may prompt you to imagine leaving your pet dog outside during stormy weather. In a dental context, canine exposure simple a procedure meant to address what’s called an impacted tooth. An impacted tooth is one that, for some reason, has become stuck in the surrounding bone or tissue.
Technically, any tooth may become impacted, but typically the condition most often affects wisdom teeth and canine teeth. In terms of utility, canine teeth are probably the most useful ones we have, as their sharp, angular shape allows us to grip and tear the food that we eat. Canine teeth also serve an aesthetic function, however, to the extent that the way that one’s canine teeth are angled influence the perception of a smile to be more attractive. Thus, canine exposure procedures may be performed with both purposes in mind.
The procedure for canine exposure is quite simple. The dentist cuts a small hole in the gum which then allows the tooth to erupt. The dentist also uses a dental brace to help guide the tooth to its desired position.
Impacted teeth are often perceivable by the naked eye, but occasionally x-rays are required. Often, an impacted canine tooth is caused by the presence of another tooth, or recess, such as involving a baby tooth. Another sign that you may have an impacted tooth is if you find one of your teeth loose, or wobbly. If you suspect you have an impacted canine tooth, speak to your dentist about getting a check-up.