Hyperdontia (Supernumerary Teeth)

hyperdontia supernumerary teeth pictures

Hyperdontia Definition:- It is a condition which is characterized by the presence of supernumerary teeth or excessive number of teeth.

What is a Hyperdontia?

It is an oral condition which is characterized by the presence of extra teeth in individuals. These extra teeth are also called supernumerary teeth. When a normal child is born, he or she will have 20 primary teeth and 32 permanent teeth. Primary teeth are the first set of teeth that grow till the age of 36 months after the birth of a new born baby. They shed by the time the child reaches the age of 13 years. It is then that permanently teeth start growing and are fully evolved by the time your child reaches 20 years. Any child that grows more than 32 teeth is said to suffer from Hyperdontia.

It is a rare condition and the extra teeth can grow at any location or position in the oral cavity. Also, according to medical research, it is unusual for a person to have Hyperdontia without the presence of any sort of syndrome like Down’s syndrome or Gardner’s syndrome.

How does the Hyderdontia extra teeth look like?

The supernumerary teeth can be single or multiple, unilateral or bilateral or morphologically normal or deformed. Single supernumerary teeth are more commonly seen than multiple supernumerary teeth and the probability of occurrence of both the cases is 1:9. 

Is there any classification for Hyperdontia?

Hyperdontia classification can be done according to the shape and location of the supernumerary teeth.

Classification by shape

Hyperdontia or supernumerary teeth can be classified as the following on the basis of shape:

  • Conical
  • Tuberculate
  • Odontome
  • Supplemental
  • Molariform

Let’s learn more about each!

Conical Supernumerary Teeth :- These are the most common types of extra teeth present in patients with Hyperdontia. They are usually related to the middle incisors and have normal roots. Their presence can disturb the position or growth of maxillary central incisors.

Tuberculate Supernumerary Teeth :- These extra teeth have atypical roots and are not very common. They resemble the share of a drum and grow on the palatal area of the central incisors. Their growth often interrupts the growth of the incisors.

Odontome Supernumerary Teeth :- This growth is not actually a supernumerary teeth but a mass of several type of dental tissues. Some Odontome resemble a normal tooth while some appear to be unorganized dental tissues.

Supplemental Supernumerary Teeth :- They are extremely common and appear along the continuity of the alveolar line.

Molariform Supernumerary Teeth :- These supernumerary teeth have a thorough root and resemble the appearance of premolars.

Classification by location

Hyperdontia or supernumerary teeth can be classified as the following on the basis of location:

  • Paramolar
  • Mesiodens
  • Distomolar

Let’s learn more about each!

Paramolar Supernumerary Teeth :- These supernumerary teeth are located on the lingual or buccal aspects of maxillary molars. They are small and undeveloped.

Mesioden Supernumerary Teeth :- These extra teeth are located on the upper central incisors. They can be single, multiple, unilateral, bilateral, horizontal, inverted or even vertical.

Distomolar Supernumerary Teeth :- These are located on the distal aspect of the third molar. They are the second most common type of supernumerary teeth.

Diagnosis : Hyperdontia or extra teeth are easily noticeable in a normal dental check-up. The complete diagnosis can be done clinically or radiographically.  Dental X-rays are most commonly used to ascertain Hyperdontia.

Causes of Hyperdontia

Although no conclusive cause has been settled for Hyperdontia, there are several reasons and causes that can be responsible for the growth of extra teeth in individual of different ages, genders and races.

Genetics :- Some experts believe that our genes play a major role in giving rise to Hyperdontia. Research is still on and it is not clear which genes at the cause of the problem. Parents will supernumerary teeth are more likely to give birth to children who can develop these extra teeth as they grow up as compared to parents with normal teeth.

Environmental Factors :- Some experts believe that environmental factors like exposure to high level of certain harmful chemicals and radioactive substances can contribute in the presence of Hyperdontia or growth of extra teeth during the growing years in children. Research is still on to ascertain while chemical elements causes these dental changes.

Down’s syndrome :- Growth of supernumerary teeth or Hyperdontia is a characteristic feature of Down’s syndrome and the same is caused due to genetic chromosomal disorder. Children born with Down’s syndrome are highly likely to experience Hyperdontia in early stages of childhood.

Ehler-Danlos syndrome :- This heredity connective tissue disorder is one of the leading causes of Hyperdontia is children.

Cleidocranial Dysostosis :- This is also a heredity disorder that causes improper growth of bones and teeth and thus results in the presence of supernumerary teeth in children. Children with Cleidocranial Dysostosis have a missing clavicle bone.

Cleft Lip :- Cleft lip is a congenital birth defect in which the child is born with the upper lip physically separated in two with a narrow opening. Supernumerary teeth are very commonly seen in children with Cleft.

Overactive Dental Lamina :- The hyperactivity theory clearly states that Hyderdontia is caused due to an overactive dental lamina.

What are the problems associated with Hyperdontia?

There are numerous side effects or problems that people with Hyperdontia often experience.

Speech issues :- Presence of extra teeth affects the speech of a child and reduces its clarity. This indirectly affects the child’s capability to learn and express in public.

Crowding of teeth :- A person’s jaw and gum line is designed in a particular way in order to hold 32 teeth perfectly. Presence of supernumerary teeth gives rise to congestion of teeth and makes them appear inaccurate and displaced.

Trouble in chewing and biting food :- Irregular placement of teeth makes chewing and biting food a difficult task for children.

Tumour development :- Hyperdontia can increase the risk of development of cysts and tumours in early stages of childhood.

Abnormal facial appearance :- Since the teeth play a very important role in the facial features of an individual, Hyperdontia which comes with irregular positioning of teeth can result in abnormal facial appearance.

Cavity and tooth decay :- Brushing teeth is a really difficult task for people suffering from Hyperdontia. Due to absurd placement of the extra teeth, food particles remain stuck and can lead to cavity and tooth decay over a period of time.

Oral cancer :- Poor dental hygiene because of overcrowding of the teeth can lead to growth of oral cancers.

Is it a good idea to remove extra teeth in patients with Hyperdontia?

In many cases, the extra tooth does not pose any potential threat or discomfort to the patient, but there are a few situations where removal of the supernumerary tooth becomes essential.

Delayed growth of permanent teeth :- Hyperdontia or growth of extra teeth in and around the location of the permanent teeth can lead to delayed growth of the permanent teeth or even no growth in some cases.

Dislocation of normal teeth :- The supernumerary tooth that grows as a result of Hyperdontia can displaces one or more normal tooth from their position, resulting in improper alignment of the teeth.

Hyperdontia Treatment

If your child is experiencing any of the problems mentioned in the “problems associated with Hyperdontia” section, then you must consult a doctor immediately. Once the doctor is sure of the characteristics of your supernumerary teeth, he may recommend the following treatment:

Patience :- After proper diagnosis, if the doctor feels that the extra tooth does not pose any threat to the child, he may ask you to take the “Wait and Watch” approach. He will monitor the supernumerary tooth’s growth for a few months and then arrive on a conclusion.

Extraction of the extra teeth :- If the placement of the extra tooth is not very complicated, the doctor may recommend tooth extraction. It is a very simple procedure in which the doctor will extract your child’s tooth by applying local anaesthesia in the gums or area surrounding the tooth.

Orthodontic method :- After extraction of the supernumerary tooth, your doctor may recommend the use of orthodontic tools like braces and plates to ensure that the alignment of teeth is restored over a period of time as the child grows.

Endodontic method :- If the extra tooth fuses with the permanent tooth, then your doctor may have to undertake the endodontic approach. In this method, the tissue around the root of the affected permanent tooth is removed and the Hyperdontia tooth is surgically eliminated.

Hyperdontia pictures

Check out these pictures that will help you understand what supernumerary or Hyperdontia teeth look like!

hyperdontia pictures

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