Orthodontic Uncoveries in Memphis TN

Orthodontic Uncoveries

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(901) 300-4162


6268 Poplar Ave.

Memphis, TN, 38119

An impacted tooth can cause distress and affect the functionality of your bite. At Periodontal Associates of Memphis, our doctors can expertly uncover impacted teeth and help realign your bite.

What is an Orthodontic Uncovery?

When a tooth is impacted (common with wisdom teeth, but also possible with other teeth), normally an overgrowth of gum or a protrusion of bone is in the way. This can be caused by the mouth being too crowded with existing teeth, or by a tooth “wandering” and not coming in at the expected position. An orthodontic uncovery is a surgical solution that frees the tooth and allows further action to be taken to put it into the correct position in the mouth.

Benefits of an Orthodontic Uncovery

An impacted tooth is prone to infection, and even if not infected can cause pain from the pressure. An orthodontic uncovery relieves pain and pressure, allows any infection to be treated, and permits the tooth to be gently guided back into its correct place in the arch.

What Causes Tooth Impaction?

Tooth impaction can be caused by a wide range of situations, including:

  • Out of Sequence Tooth Eruption: Teeth erupting into place early may prevent other teeth from erupting into their correct position.
  • Crowding of Teeth: A too-small jaw can block teeth from erupting into their correct position.
  • Crossbites: Incorrect position of teeth and/ or jaw bone.
  • Ankylosis: A condition in which the tooth root fuses with the bone. Normally there is a periodontal ligament between the tooth root and bone.
  • Genetic Factors: Tooth impaction tends to run in families, thanks to similar growth patterns and bone structure.
  • Extra Thick Gum Tissue and Bone: Thick tissue can prevent teeth from erupting.

The main problem preventing teeth from erupting into their proper position are resistance factors, such as thick gum tissue, dense (hard) bone, or entrapment by other tooth roots. Our Memphis periodontists will perform a complete exam and take digital scans to discover how to work around these resistance factors and free the impacted tooth without causing damage.

Lip or Cheek Side Tooth Impactions

If the tooth is stuck on the lip or cheek side of the jaw bone, healthy, keratinized gum tissue may be blocking the tooth from erupting. Many dentists will simply cut away this tissue, causing gum recession that can lead to more issues later. Dr. and Godat preserve the healthy gum tissue by simply shifting it away from the tooth. This method prevents gum recession and the need for a soft tissue graft in the future.

Palatal Side Tooth Impactions

For teeth impacted in the roof of the mouth (palate), Dr. Godat remove extra bone in the area, then create a tiny window in the gum tissue to allow the tooth to emerge. For both types of impactions, once the tooth is free, Wilckodontics can then be implemented to move the tooth into the correct position.

If you have an impacted tooth, contact us to find out what your options are for freeing it and moving it into the correct position in your mouth.