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Ever heard of someone having a double row of teeth like a shark? This is more common than anyone might think. It typically happens because of baby teeth that fail to fall out. In turn, adult teeth come in behind them causing you to have one tooth over the other. This is usually not painful but it does give way to food and debris getting stuck between teeth. This will eventually cause cavities and decay. In turn, decay will cause pain and the need for surgical intervention in the future.

Baby teeth

Baby teeth fall out when their root is eaten away by the erupting permanent teeth. These new teeth push their way through the middle of the baby tooth causing it to fall out. When baby teeth are out permanent teeth push through the gum into the empty spot. Although this is not always the case. Permanent teeth can also find a way out of the gum away from the root of the baby tooth. Leaving this one intact and creating a double row of teeth.

Retained teeth

Clinically this termed retained teeth. Retained baby teeth will cause permanent teeth to erupt from a different place in the jaw. This, in turn, causes the tooth to come out sideways, in front or behind the baby tooth.

Most cases of the double row of teeth involve the bottom and canine teeth. Canines are the pointy teeth on each side of our top teeth. Also referred to in pediatric dentistry as vampire teeth. In fact, canine teeth that come out over or under the baby tooth are most commonly removed due to aesthetics.


After examination from dentists which might include an x-ray. He or she might determine to wait to intervene. It’s recommended to wait and see if the teeth fall out on their own. Growth and eruption of all permanent teeth might push out the retained teeth. Yet most commonly removal of these will be needed.

Sometimes removal is the best bet in avoiding future orthodontic treatment in children. As well as it will help make way for all permanent teeth to come in appropriately. Another reason for removal is to receive orthodontic treatment like braces. For placement of braces, retained teeth must be extracted. Also, the extraction sight must have healed before braces. In regards to adults who are still carrying around a retained tooth. It’s best to remove them to avoid decay and further complications.

There are other extreme cases of retained teeth. Like when permanent canine teeth make their way out high up in our gums. In clinical terms, this is ectopically erupting teeth. These teeth are more likely to need surgical removal. This will relieve pain and prevent damage to the inside of the cheek. Due to constant friction with the tooth from speaking or eating.

For more information on retained teeth contact us and make an appointment. Our highly qualified dentists guarantee the best and most affordable care.

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