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Julian Chen
Julian Chen, Dentist
Category: Dental
Satisfied Customers: 568
Experience:  Practicing General Dentist since 2002
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My adult son has very small teeth and has been advised that

Resolved Question:

My adult son has very small teeth and has been advised that something needs to be done asap. He's been told that it's just a question of having caps put on his teeth, but I would have thought his whole bite would then be changed?

We'd like some advice as to a good practitioner in the Frankston region of Melbourne who could give sound advice and treatment.
Submitted: 8 years ago.
Category: Dental
Expert:  Julian Chen replied 8 years ago.

Aside from his teeth possibly being smaller than "average," are there any other reasons why your son wants dental work?

Or has he only been advised by the dentist and he, himself, actually doesn't really have any complaints?

If all else is "normal" (no pain, no problems with eating, biting chewing) and that the only thing wrong with his teeth is that they're proportionally smaller than the average Joe, then nothing really needs to be done. If the way his teeth look does not bother him, and especially if he has no complaints of pain or difficulty functioning, then those are even more reason to leave things alone.

There's an old adage... "If it aint broke, why fix it?"

I like to tell my patients that the best Dentistry is NO Dentistry. This doesn't mean that if one has a cavity, one should ignore it. What I mean when I say it is that if there's absolutely no "need" for fillings, restorations, orthodontic work, then it's better to leave well enough alone. There's nothing that we can provide in Dentistry that is better than what mother nature gave us. We can restore decay teeth, but the restoration won't be as strong or as good as a healthy natural tooth. We can replace missing teeth, but the bridge/denture/implant will not be as good as a healthy natural tooth.

So if your son has no untreated decay, and has no additional complaints, then I'd rather nothing be done so that we don't push him down that path of perpetual restoration replacement unnecessarily. The more dental work done, the more maintenance is required in terms of home care as well as routine visits for cleanings and check-ups.

Now if your son suffers from amelogenesis imperfecta, or dentinogenesis imperfecta, or is suffering from pain, and/or extremely self-conscious due to his small teeth, then that's a whole different matter. But since you didn't cite any additional, underlying medical condition to go along with the small-ish teeth, I can only assume he's a perfectly healthy individual, and that he has no self-esteem or psychological issues due to the proportionally smaller teeth.

If there are additional details to suggest that he needs dental work, please let me know.

Best of luck to you and your son.



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