Expose and Bond
When teeth other than third molars (the wisdom teeth), fail to erupt, these teeth are referred to as impacted. Impacted teeth such as the canines (the most commonly impacted teeth), premolars, and molars are an infrequent occurrence. However, when these teeth fail to erupt, it is usually due to a lack of space or crowding in the mouth, or as a result of a positioning problem. This can create a functional as well as an esthetic problem during growth and development.
When a tooth remains impacted, it will often be diagnosed by a dentist or an orthodontist early in a child’s life. This typically happens in the early adolescent years, when teeth such as the canines and premolars are just beginning to erupt. Clinical examination and x-rays are often used to diagnose an impacted tooth. An oral surgeon can assist in uncovering the involved tooth to facilitate its eruption as well as to enable it to be brought into alignment by the orthodontist.
Expose and bond is a procedure performed by the oral surgeon to enable the procedures necessary to align the tooth. Once the impacted tooth is identified, the oral surgeon performs a procedure to uncover the tooth and bond an orthodontic bracket to its surface. A chain is then attached to the patient’s braces. The expose and bond procedure can be performed in the clinic by the oral surgeon under various anesthetic options to make the patient very comfortable and relaxed.
After an expose and bond procedure, healing typically takes 1-2 weeks.
The orthodontist will then periodically adjust the chain to bring the impacted tooth into the mouth and to align it in the proper position.
We recommend a soft food diet for the first couple of days following the procedure. It is important to keep the mouth clean to promote the healing process.