A supernumerary tooth is a developmental anomaly of number characterized by the presence of tooth in addition to the normal series. The prevalence varies between 0.3 and 3.8% of the population.
Supernumerary tooth in the primary dentition is a less common finding, with one-fifth of this seen in the permanent dentition. The etiology of supernumerary tooth is not known.
Over the years, various theories have been suggested, which include dichotomy of the tooth bud, hyperactivity of the dental lamina and a combination of genetic and environmental factors.
Supernumerary teeth may occur as a single isolated anomaly or in association with syndromes like cleft lip and palate, Downs syndromes, Cleidocranial dysplasia, etc.
While supernumerary tooth may be found in any region of the dental arch, the most common site is the palatal midline between the two maxillary central incisors, where it is termed as mesiodens.
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Mesiodens account for 80% of all supernumerary teeth. On the basis of its morphology, mesiodens can be classified as conical, supplemental and tuberculate type.
A mesiodens may erupt normally, stay impacted, appear inverted or take a horizontal position. Asymptomatic unerupted mesiodens may be discovered during radiological examination of the premaxillary area.
° Mukhopadhyay S. JOURNAL OF INDIAN SOCIETY OF PEDODONTICS AND PREVENTIVE DENTISTRY | Jan - Mar 2011 | Issue 1 | Vol 29