Would you automatically notice if an adult hadn't lost their baby teeth? It's not all that common, but some people's adult teeth fail to develop, meaning that a baby tooth wasn't naturally displaced by the growth of an adult tooth beneath it. It's extremely rare for an entire set of baby teeth to be retained; the condition generally affects isolated teeth in the mouth (or even a single tooth). If your family dentist tells you that one (or more) of your child's baby teeth has been retained due to an absent adult tooth, what happens next?
A thorough assessment of the ultimate functionality of retained baby teeth must generally wait until your child's jaw has stopped growing (in their mid to late teens), since most types of permanent dental intervention are dependent on the jaw reaching its maximum size. This allows for the extraction of retained baby teeth and the placement of dental implants. When the retained baby teeth have the necessary strength (based upon their root structure), and it's only their size that is problematic, they can be fitted with dental crowns. Your family dentist can offer a temporary effective solution in the interim.
Chairside veneers are dental veneers that are fabricated by your family dentist using resin. This reflects the temporary nature of the treatment, in that the veneers are intended to improve the appearance of your child's baby teeth until a more permanent solution becomes feasible. The resin veneers are shaped by your child's dentist and then bonded onto the teeth. This masks the conspicuousness of the retained baby teeth, making them appear to be the same size and shape of the surrounding adult teeth that have developed.
Caring for Resin Veneers
Because these veneers are resin, they're not as robust as their porcelain counterparts, and your child must be careful to avoid permanently staining the resin, as this would require replacement of the veneers. Beyond that, your child just needs to care for their resin veneers as though they were natural teeth. The results are immediate, so your child's smile will be corrected the moment the veneers are installed.
Your child's dentist will systematically assess your child's retained baby teeth as a part of their regular dental checkups, and this will involve x-rays to determine the strength of the retained tooth's root system. The root systems of baby teeth are shallower than adult teeth, and this dictates whether the retained teeth can be left in position (possibly with the ultimate addition of a dental crown), or if extraction followed by a dental implant will become necessary.
Retained baby teeth aren't an especially serious dental problem, but they will require some form of assistance. This assistance may be largely cosmetic and is often only intended to offer a temporary solution until your child is ready for a permanent fix.