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Children with protruding teeth face a higher risk of damaging them

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Posted May 17, 2019

Our permanent adult teeth are often growing not straight. It is not that big of a deal, because we have ways to straighten them back up. However, protruding teeth of a young child are often in danger of being damaged. Scientists from the University of Adelaide say that this risk can be mitigated without spending a lot of money.

Child smile. Image credit: Pixabay (Pixabay licence)

Child smile. Image credit: Pixabay (Pixabay licence)

Damaging protruding teeth is a very easy thing to do. In fact, any kind of teeth damage is very common. It is estimated that traumatic dental injuries are fifth most prevalent disease or injury globally. It has a huge effect on one’s health, but they are also producing a significant blow to a person’s mental health and self-esteem.

Damaging protruding teeth is that much easier. Scientists calculated that children up to the age of six years with teeth that stick out more than 3 mm have over three times higher chance of trauma than children without protruding teeth. Older children whose teeth stick out more than 5 mm are facing twice as big of a risk of teeth damage.

Teeth that are sticking out have to be protected to prevent damage, but it does not have to be expensive. Image credit: Jason Regan via Wikimedia (CC BY 2.0)

Scientists analysed cases of more than 50,000 children aged under 19 years. They found that there is a direct link between the degree to which a young patient’s teeth protrude and the chance of damaging them. In fact, everyone already knew this from experience. Protruding teeth can be corrected using braces and other similar methods, but corrective orthodontic treatment is usually applied only when all permanent adult teeth have come through. This happens at around the age of 12, but parents don’t actually have to wait that long to protect the teeth of their children. It doesn’t even have to be that costly.

First of all, children should wear a mouth guard to protect protruding teeth when playing sports. Dentists can also measure the how far teeth are protruding and apply simple braces which can reduce the prominence of protruding teeth. Likelihood of teeth sticking out a significant mount can be reduced by preventing children from sucking their thumbs.

Dr Esma Dogramaci, one of the authors of the study, said: “Early identification and protection of protruding teeth through regular dental check-ups reduces the chance of early problems becoming long-term dental issues. If young teeth are broken or knocked out long-term issues may occur like the need for root canal treatment or even tooth loss, requiring a lifetime commitment for general dental treatment”.

Regular check-ups are very important. Parents should take a moment to teach their children about the importance of the visits to the dentists. Good oral health is very important for a person’s wellbeing, confidence and overall condition.

 

Source: University of Adelaide

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