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J Esthet Restor Dent. 2010 Oct;22(5):297-312. doi: 10.1111/j.1708-8240.2010.00356.x.

Orthodontic treatment of a congenitally missing maxillary lateral incisor.

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Postgraduate Orthodontic Program, Arizona School of Dentistry & Oral Health, A.T. Still University, Mesa, USA.


Clinicians agree that, regardless of gender or race, tooth agenesis has become more prominent in recent societies. The congenital absence of one or more maxillary lateral incisors poses a challenge to effective treatment planning for the restorative dentist. However, the one-sided orthodontic approach of just moving canines mesially to eliminate restorative procedures leads to compromise. Adult patients presenting with malocclusions, missing lateral incisors, or anterior crowding but who fail to get proper orthodontic treatment, requesting instead esthetic solutions that do not establish a stable occlusion, proper alignment, and proper axial inclination of the teeth will have compromised esthetic and periodontal results. An evaluation of anterior smile esthetics must include both static and dynamic evaluations of frontal and profile views to optimize both dental and facial appearance. This article presents how orthodontics is combined with other specialties in treating a congenitally missing lateral incisor. One case is used to illustrate how orthodontic treatment is progressed in collaboration with other specialists.


Patients with missing teeth, crowding, midline deviation, unesthetic gingival contours, or other restorative needs may require the interaction between various specialists. For the successful treatment of orthodontic-restorative patients, an interdisciplinary team effort is vital.

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