Peg Lateral Incisors
Peg lateral teeth, or
peg lateral incisors, are terms used to describe a condition
where the lateral incisors (the second tooth on either side of
the front teeth) are undersized and appear smaller than
normal. This situation occurs when the permanent lateral
incisors do not fully develop. Sometimes, the permanent adult
lateral incisor teeth do not develop at all, leaving only the
baby teeth (primary or deciduous teeth) in their place.
Although some people refer to these teeth as peg laterals,
they are really over retained deciduous teeth. A true peg
lateral incisor is a term reserved for the under-developed
adult permanent tooth that erupts after the deciduous tooth
has been lost.
Primary teeth erupt
and exfoliate, or fall out, during very specific time periods
of child development. Once the primary teeth are lost,
permanent teeth can be expected to erupt into the space left
by the lost primary teeth. The chart below shows the time
ranges of various tooth eruptions.
Since peg lateral
incisors are undersized, many times there will be a space
between them and the adjacent teeth (this space normally would
have been occupied by a fully developed lateral incisor).
This resultant space causes the alignment of the teeth, and
thus the smile, to appear abnormal. There are several ways to
treat and correct this condition. If the roots are strong but
the visible teeth are undersized, the peg lateral incisors can
be covered with porcelain crowns or porcelain veneers.
Porcelain veneers are the most common treatment for peg
lateral incisors, and require little or no tooth preparation.
A porcelain shell is simply bonded over the smaller peg
laterals making the teeth appear normal in size.
If not enough space
exists between the central incisors (front teeth) and the
canine teeth to accommodate normally sized lateral incisors,
space must be created by orthodontic treatment. Traditional
band orthodontic treatment or Invisalign appliances can be
used to create the necessary space.
If the peg lateral
incisor has a very small root or is an over-retained deciduous
tooth (baby tooth) with a partially reabsorbed root, there may
not be enough support to hold a free standing restoration such
as a porcelain veneer or porcelain crown. In this situation,
there are three possible methods of treatment. The first
method is to support the weak tooth with a splint bar or
retainer behind the tooth, joining it to the adjacent teeth on
either side of it. Once the tooth is supported, a porcelain
veneer can be placed over the remaining tooth structure to
establish the look of a normal sized lateral incisor.
The second method is
to remove the weak tooth and replace it with an all porcelain
or porcelain-fused-to-gold bridge. Specific conditions in the
mouth determine which of these two materials are to be used.
When the bridge is constructed, the tooth on either side of
the space where the peg lateral was is prepared for a crown.
An impression is taken and sent to a dental laboratory, and a
final bridge is returned to the dentist and inserted at a
second visit. During the time period while the bridge is
being fabricated at the laboratory, a temporary plastic bridge
is placed in the mouth to provide function and cosmetic
improvement for the missing tooth. When the final bridge is
returned, the temporary plastic bridge is removed and replaced
with the permanent porcelain bridge.
|The third method is to remove the weak
tooth and replace it with a dental implant. Once a tooth is
removed, an dental implant is surgically placed in the bone.
The implant is allowed to heal for 4 months in order for the
surrounding bone to attach itself to the dental implant. This
process is referred to as osseointegration. Once this occurs,
a custom post (called an abutment) is attached to the implant.
Finally, a porcelain crown is placed over the dental implant
which replaces the missing lateral incisor.
If you are unhappy
with the way your smile looks because of peg lateral incisors
or over-retained deciduous teeth, now there is hope. To
schedule your complimentary consultation with one of the most
experienced dentists in Cosmetic and Implant Dentistry,
Or visit our
|Fix your Peg Lateral
Incisors at the beautiful Kurpis Cosmetic Dentistry treatment
center located in Ridgewood New Jersey.
Dr Kurpis has been serving patients from New Jersey NJ, Manhattan NYC New York, CT Connecticut,
Long Island, and around the world for over 35 years.