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A snaggle tooth is an irregular or out-of-alignment tooth that stands out from the rest of your teeth.
Depending on the shape and angle of a snaggle tooth, brushing and flossing in the area may be difficult. However, even if these teeth aren’t posing any oral health concerns, you may consider them a cosmetic flaw.
If most of your teeth are well-aligned and a few are out of place, you have some options for aligning them, including braces, clear aligners, and other treatments.
Braces have been used for centuries to bring out-of-place teeth into proper alignment. They work by putting pressure on your teeth with brackets (one on each tooth) and wires (connecting the brackets together).
Braces may need to be worn for only a few months or over two years, depending on a person’s needs. After the braces are removed, you’ll need to wear a retainer indefinitely to help stabilize your teeth.
Braces can cost anywhere from $4,000 to over $10,000, depending on the type of braces, your needs, and where you live. Lingual braces, which run along the back of your teeth, are likely to cost more than traditional braces.
Dental insurance may partially or fully cover braces if they’re considered medically necessary.
Clear aligners are transparent plastic trays fitted to your teeth. They’re a common alternative to braces when the misalignment isn’t as severe. There are several brands of clear aligners, and they vary in quality.
Depending on the brand and your location, clear aligners can cost between $1,000 to $8,000. It’s possible that this cost may be paid in part or in full by your insurance.
A dental veneer is a layer of porcelain or composite resin placed over a tooth. It can help protect a tooth and give it a more esthetic color and shape.
One veneer can cost as little as $500 or up to several thousand dollars. Insurance isn’t likely to cover veneers.
Tooth contouring involves shaving a small amount of enamel off the tooth. If your snaggle tooth only protrudes a little bit, tooth contouring may be an option.
Tooth contouring could cost anywhere from $50 to a few hundred dollars. Insurance may cover it in cases of injury where it’s considered a necessary procedure.
Only very severe cases of single misaligned teeth will require extraction and replacement.
Tooth extraction on its own may cost between $100 to $500 dollars. A single-tooth denture may be an additional several hundred dollars. An implant to replace one tooth can cost between $3,000 to $4,000.
Insurance may cover a single-tooth denture, but isn’t likely to cover the full cost of an implant.
Several issues can cause a snaggle tooth, such as:
Depending on the cause, the snaggle tooth itself may not be the only abnormality that needs to be corrected. In other cases, it is a mild deviation that can be treated on its own.
A snaggle tooth may be nothing more than a cosmetic issue. But depending on the shape, angle, and location of the tooth, it could cause more serious problems if left untreated.
When a snaggle tooth overlaps with another tooth, it can be difficult to keep it clean and healthy with brushing and flossing. Bacteria builds up in the area, forming plaque and contributing to tooth decay or gum disease.
If your snaggle tooth results from overcrowding or a gap from a missing tooth, the tooth could continue to drift over time. Your other teeth could begin to move out of place as well.
If you have trouble cleaning the area around a misaligned tooth or have any concerns, you should see your dentist for an evaluation.
A snaggle tooth is a single misaligned tooth that stands out of place when compared to your other teeth. It may pose an obstacle to effective brushing and flossing or may be a troublesome cosmetic issue.
If you have one or a couple of snaggle teeth, you have several options for aligning them, including braces, clear aligners, and other treatments. Talk to your dentist if you’re concerned about a misaligned tooth.
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