Orthodontics is a specialty of dentistry that deals with diagnosis, prevention and treatment of congenital or acquired malocclusions (an abnormal bite due to malpositioned teeth and/or jaws).
Selected conditions that are commonly encountered in veterinary orthodontics include:
- missing teeth or supernumerary teeth,
- linguoversion of mandibular canine teeth (displacement of lower canine tooth/teeth that causes serious trauma to the hard palate),
- mesioversion of maxillary canine teeth (displacement of upper canine tooth/teeth that may lead to inability to close the mouth),
- relative mandibular brachygnathia or prognathia (lower jaw too short or too long relative to the upper jaw),
- micrognathia (lower jaw too short and too narrow) and
All animals with an abnormal bite will be thoroughly evaluated and genetic counseling provided; in general, breeding of animals with malocclusions is strongly discouraged. Only animals with an abnormal bite resulting in pain and discomfort will be treated as treatment for aesthetic reasons only is not justifiable.
Extraction of the tooth/teeth that is/are causing a problem is commonly performed as a one-step-treatment alternative to orthodontic treatment.
If you have noted any problems with your animal, please consult your veterinarian.