Frequently Asked Questions About Congenitally Missing Teeth

19 December 2017
 Categories: Dentist, Blog


Humans normally have 32 teeth in their mouth. However, for a variety of different reasons, some people do not develop all 32 teeth. The teeth that are missing are known as congenitally missing teeth. This means that the teeth were never present below the gums and as such, they never grew in. This is different than teeth developing, just not erupting. If you or your child suffer from this condition, you may have many questions about it. Here are a few of the most frequently asked questions about congenitally missing teeth. 

What Causes Congenitally Missing Teeth?

There are a few different things that can cause congenitally missing teeth. The first is your genetics. While it is not known why, there has been a correlation between those who have family members with congenitally missing teeth and those who have this condition. Simply put, it may run in the family. Another reason why the teeth may be missing is because of systemic conditions that affected you or your child during pregnancy or infancy. This can include high blood pressure or issues-related to an organ not properly functioning. Unfortunately, in other cases, the teeth simply may not develop for unknown reasons. 

How are Congenitally Missing Teeth Diagnosed?

Congenitally missing teeth are typically diagnosed during routine dental visits. When children are taken to the dentist, a dentist takes X-rays of their teeth. These X-rays help to diagnose cavities in the teeth, as well as allowing a dentist to see which teeth are developing and erupting and which teeth may be missing. If your child does not receive routine dental care or you notice that they have a tooth that doesn't seem to be coming in, you may want to schedule an appointment to discuss the possibility of congenitally missing teeth. 

What Are the Treatments for Congenitally Missing Teeth? 

If you have a congenitally missing tooth, there are a few different ways to address the issue. One of the options is to use a dental implant. A partial denture may also be used if a couple of teeth are missing. If your mouth is fairly crowded, braces may also be used to help shift your teeth and conceal the gap left behind by a congenitally missing tooth. 

If you or your child have a missing tooth, you will want to contact resources like Brookside Dental Associate. A dentist can perform X-rays to determine if the tooth is present and simply hasn't erupted yet or if the tooth is missing. If the tooth is missing, they can discuss with you the various options to replace it, helping you to determine which is the best option for your or your child.