Persistent Deciduous Teeth

Today's story is about a cute little Cavoodle named Pax. He was booked in for his castration procedure at 5 months old but in the weeks leading up to the planned surgery his parents noticed something astray in his mouth.. Pax had an extra row of teeth! A quick check-up the next day confirmed that his baby teeth (deciduous teeth) did not fall out in time before the adult (permanent) teeth started to erupt. When this happens, the condition is described as having persistent deciduous teeth.

As I would jokingly tell my learning toddler that two legs should not share the same pant leg as he dresses himself, nor should two teeth ever share the same space. If persistent deciduous teeth are not taken out immediately to free up some room it could cause the permanent teeth to grow into an abnormal position, leading to crowding or abnormal teeth contact with other teeth, the hard palate or gums. In Pax's case, he had 10 persistent deciduous canine and incisor teeth. His lower permanent canines were at risk of growing inwards into the mouth and his upper canines were at risk of being pushed too forward due to the presence of some very firmly stuck deciduous canines! 

Pax had his castration and extra teeth removed all in the one procedure and he made a speedy recovery. His permanent teeth quickly moved into their normal position because the deciduous teeth were promptly removed within the relatively small window of his teeth eruption. This simple procedure done at the right time has one of the biggest impacts on our patient's oral health.

Written by Dr Chiew-Lian Cheng, Veterinarian

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