Im 15 & just got braces about a month ago. My canines are protruding a little but not a lot. My ortho gave me 3 options to fix my overbite. Wearing rubber bands, metal springs or extracting 2 upper 1st bicuspids. He said the extraction would take time off of needing my braces. I chose that. I am set to have the teeth extracted is in 2 days. AND I AM FREAKING OUT! I've heard all these horror stories about what could happen to my profile & that it could make my face sunken. Am I being ridiculous?
Cons of Extracting 2 Upper Bicuspids?
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Doctor Answers 3
Extracting two upper bicuspids: effects on profile
You are not being ridiculous, that is a great question! We really do want to avoid creating sunken profiles! As long as you have a true overbite where your upper canines are in front of the lower canines instead of behind them (as viewed from the side) there should be no problem extracting the upper bicuspids. If you were also extracting lower bicuspids you might get some retraction of your front teeth and perhps of your lips as well. But even here, other factors such as the amount of tooth crowding, your existing profile and your soft tissue & lip architecture, can affect the outcome. It is your orthodontist's job to analyze all of these factors and come up with the best plan for you. It sounds like you are a very aware patient and I'm sure you will get a good result!
Scared of extractions and changing my profile
Extracting upper bicuspids can either improve or worsen your profile depending on where and how crowded your front teeth are when you start your treatment. In the "olden days" orthodontists used to extract teeth on almost all patients, many of whom ended up with flat profiles. The best way to ease your fear is to talk to your orthodontist and ask where your front teeth will end up at the end of TX. He/she should be able to give you a pretty good idea.
Extractions can Effect your Facial Appearance
Extraction of teeth can effect your facial appearance; however, whether the change is a good one or a bad one depends on your face.
Reducing the volume of a protuding dentition will actually help provide better harmony to your face, but the stereotype of extractions sinking in your face exists for a reason. Much of the time taking out teeth doesn't effect your face in a positive manner and requires careful consideration by you and your doctor if you are heading down this path.
Without records and photos, I can't give you a great answer about how extractions may or may not effect your facial aesthetics, but if it concerns you bring it up with your doctor.
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These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.