Dental and Enamel Anomalies

April 10, 2023by DMC Tour0

Dental and Enamel Anomalies

Dental and enamel anomalies can occur in children and adults alike. Externally, these teeth differ from normal teeth in shape, colour and size. Therefore, the person experiences aesthetic discomfort. In the case of serious pathology, the person has difficulties chewing food and experiences pain syndrome. This article explains when and why the pathological process occurs, how it affects the teeth and whether it can be treated.

Causes of dental and enamel anomalies

Most dental and enamel anomalies are congenital, i.e. pathological changes occur during the foetal period when the tooth buds are still forming. Less frequently, anomalies are acquired.

What causes dental and enamel anomalies

  • The tooth lies sideways, so it will cause problems in any case
  • Prolonged use of certain groups of medications (including by the mother during pregnancy)
  • Changes in hormonal status
  • Problems with the endocrine and immune systems
  • Genetic diseases and genetic predisposition
  • Metabolic disorders or elevated levels of certain minerals

Dental and enamel anomalies are diagnosed by a dentist or orthodontist during routine dental check-ups or by utilizing an X-ray examination.

Types of dental anomalies: classification

  • By shape. Teeth have irregular shapes: flattened or shorter with an incisal margin, may be very small or too large.
  • By position. Teeth that are misaligned, rotated about their axis or positioned too high or too low. Abnormalities in the position of the teeth are very common nowadays and can be redetected on an X-ray.
  • According to the number of teeth. There may be completely or partially missing teeth (adentia) and over-completed teeth (polyodontia or hypodontia).
  • By the colour of the enamel. Anomalies occur due to underdevelopment of the hard tissue, and missing or excess enamel.

Abnormalities of dental enamel

Enamel covers the crown of the tooth and performs several very important functions. The main one is protection. Abnormal enamel development leads to abnormal processes, and changes in the shape, structure and colour of the tooth.

Types of enamel abnormalities

  • Hyperplasia of dental enamel

This is a case when there is too much dental tissue. It is called dental enamel hyperplasia and it is usually caused by the increased formation of dentin, which is covered by enamel on top. In this case, the teeth are no different in shape from normal teeth, but on their surface, enamel bumps called “enamel pearls” are formed. They are 2-4 mm in diameter. There may be pulp-like tissue in the centre of the “pearl”. These may occur near the roots of teeth or in the root bifurcation area. Tooth enamel hyperplasia is not physically uncomfortable, but it does require more thorough dental care.

  • Dysplasia of the tooth enamel

It is caused by abnormal development of the dental tissue and is one of the congenital abnormalities. Symptoms occur with the eruption of teeth, whether they are temporary or permanent, and enamel dysplasia of the smile zone of deciduous teeth is very common. With dysplasia, the enamel becomes thin and grey and stains appear. The shape of the tooth changes, the incisal edge is many chipped and jagged and the surface is irregular. Over time, enamel dysplasia can lead to chipping of the enamel and pain syndrome.

  • Hypoplasia of tooth enamel

It is the lack of or poorly developed enamel (amelogenesis imperfect). Hypoplasia of enamel is the most common non-carious lesion. It causes changes in the shape and appearance of the teeth, malocclusions and cavities. Enamel hypoplasia often leads to the early development of dental caries and pulpitis.

Abnormalities of enamel affect the shape and colour of teeth.

Complications that can result from abnormal teeth and enamel

  • Increased tooth sensitivity
  • Development of dental caries
  • Development of malocclusion
  • Increased rate of enamel wear
  • Extraction of a tooth with extensive damage to the hard tissue

Dental anomalies in shape and size

Pathological processes in the dental hard tissue and its underdevelopment result in changes in the anatomical shape of the tooth. These anomalies occur already during the formation of the tooth buds.

Types of dental anomalies according to shape and size

  • Hutchinson’s teeth

This is a congenital dental anomaly in which the crowns of the upper and lower incisors change shape. They look like barrels: the neck area is wide and the incisal edge has an arch-shaped notch in the middle. Often, there is no enamel covering at all, making the teeth sensitive and prone to cavities. In addition to the aesthetic disadvantage, Hutchinson’s teeth also make it difficult to eat. This affects the digestive tract and the condition of the body as a whole.

  • Pfluger teeth

The permanent molars are involved in the pathological process in this case. Pfluger teeth have a large exterior and the chewing surface is undeveloped. The cusps have the appearance of an unopened flower bud or a tree bud. Although the crown is conical on the chewing surface, the anomaly does not affect chewing.

  • Fournier’s teeth

The anomaly concerns the central incisors. They are very similar in shape to Pfluger’s teeth, but they lack the semilunar notch of the incisal edge. The enamel in this pathology is usually colourless and the teeth are not affected by decay. The crown is mechanically stable. Underdevelopment of enamel and dentin can only be observed under microscopic examination.

  • Cuspidate teeth

The lateral and central incisors of both jaws are involved. The shape of their crowns resembles a spike. This anomaly is caused by congenital premolar adentia (missing teeth in the dental arch), which can be caused by various diseases. Occasionally, overdenture teeth also have a spike shape.

Crooked teeth often cause psychological complexes, e.g., ridicule by others. A qualified doctor can help relieve the psychological and physical discomfort associated with abnormal teeth.

Diagnosis and treatment of dental and enamel anomalies

Treatment of the anomaly is limited to correcting the shape of the teeth and the colour of the enamel with veneers and crowns. Remineralisation and restorations with filling materials are also used to restore enamel. In the case of serious pathologies, the most effective method is implantation or fixed prostheses.

Only a qualified dentist or orthodontist can diagnose dental and dental hard tissue anomalies. The treatment plan in such cases is prepared individually, taking into account the characteristics of the anomaly and several other factors.

Any questions? Ask us

Dental and enamel anomalies can cause a variety of problems, including aesthetic and psychological. Timely treatment, an educated approach and the use of modern dental technology can correct most dental anomalies.

Make an appointment for a consultation at DMC Tour and we will help you.


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Copyright 2022 by DMC Tour Dental. All rights reserved.

Copyright 2022 by DMC Tour Dental. All rights reserved.