Will having baby teeth as an adult cause any problems?
I'm 19 and I still have many baby teeth as my permanent teeth have failed to develop, according to dental X-rays I have taken. I'm deciding if I should undergo costly treatment which involves extraction of baby teeth + braces + implants, or just live with my current set of teeth. I have been living with my current set of teeth with no issues at all. I'll really like to know how long baby teeth can last if there are no permanent teeth to push it out, and if they will eventually fall out soon which makes treatment inevitable. Will having baby teeth as an adult cause any other problems? Thanks!
Baby teeth with no permanent successors can last for many years if there is sufficient root structure to support chewing.
I myself have 2 baby teeth that are healthy and no permanent successors for these teeth!
If you have been considering braces, then the status of these baby teeth may be called into question. Orthodontic movement of these teeth may activate the exfoliation process and cause the baby teeth to loosen and fall out.
This is possible with any baby tooth. For this reason, in the course of planning your orthodontic treatment, you may decide to pre-empt this by removing the baby teeth as part of your treatment plan and either close the spaces left behind or preserve the spaces for implants. This decision depends on the space required to align your teeth and also your facial profile.
There is no rush to extract your baby teeth right now to place implants, especially if it is a front tooth. Since you are still so young, your upper jawbone is not completely mature and you may end up with a gum defect around the implant from continued maturation of the jawbone after the implant is placed.
Baby teeth can last even up to your 40s and the decision whether to extract them can be made even at that time without adversely affecting the outcome. The only time I would push for extraction to be done sooner is if the baby tooth root shows signs of becoming fused to the jawbone (ankylosis). This can compromise the amount of bone in that area for a future implant.
Hope this answers your question!