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Tooth formation - delayed or absent

Show Alternative Names
Delayed or absent tooth formation
Teeth - delayed or absent formation
Oligodontia
Anodontia
Hypodontia
Delayed dental development
Delayed tooth eruption
Late tooth eruption
Delayed dental eruption

When a person's teeth grow in, they may be delayed or not occur at all.

Considerations

The age at which a tooth comes in varies. Most infants get their first tooth between 4 and 8 months, but it may be earlier or later.

Causes

Specific diseases can affect tooth shape, tooth color, when they grow in, or tooth absence. Delayed or absent tooth formation can result from many different conditions, including:

When to Contact a Medical Professional

Talk to your health care provider if your child has not developed any teeth by 9 months of age.

What to Expect at Your Office Visit

The provider will perform a physical exam. This will include a detailed look at your child's mouth and gums. You will be asked questions such as:

  • In what order did the teeth emerge?
  • At what age did other family members develop teeth?
  • Are any other family members missing teeth that never "came in"?
  • What other symptoms are present?

An infant with delayed or absent tooth formation may have other symptoms and signs that indicate a specific medical condition.

Medical tests are not often needed. Most of the time, delayed tooth formation is normal. Dental x-rays may be done.

Sometimes, children or adults are missing teeth they never developed. Cosmetic or orthodontic dentistry can correct this problem.

Text only

Review Date: 2/6/2020

Reviewed By

Michael Kapner, DDS, Family and Cosmetic Dentistry, Norwalk, CT. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.

References

Dean JA, Turner EG. Eruption of the teeth: local, systemic, and congenital factors that influence the process. In: Dean JA, ed. McDonald and Avery's Dentistry for the Child and Adolescent. 10th ed. St Louis, MO: Elsevier; 2016:chap 19.

Dhar V. Development and developmental anomalies of the teeth. In: Kliegman RM, St. Geme JW, Blum NJ, Shah SS, Tasker RC, Wilson KM, eds. Nelson Textbook of Pediatrics. 21st ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2020:chap 333.

Dinneen L, Slovis TL. The mandible. In: Coley BD, ed. Caffey's Pediatric Diagnostic Imaging. 13th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2019:chap 22.

Disclaimer

The information provided herein should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed medical professional should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Links to other sites are provided for information only -- they do not constitute endorsements of those other sites. © 1997- A.D.A.M., a business unit of Ebix, Inc. Any duplication or distribution of the information contained herein is strictly prohibited.

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Tooth anatomy - Illustration Thumbnail

Tooth anatomy

The structure of the tooth includes dentin, pulp and other tissues, blood vessels and nerves imbedded in the bony jaw. Above the gum line, the tooth is protected by the hard enamel covering.

Illustration

Development of baby teeth - Illustration Thumbnail

Development of baby teeth

Both baby teeth (deciduous or milk teeth) and permanent teeth have fairly well-defined times of eruption. The ages listed are the normal ages that a baby tooth emerges.

Ages that a baby tooth emerges
TYPE OF TOOTHUPPER TOOTH ERUPTS BY LOWER TOOTH ERUPTS BY
Central incisor8-10 Months 6-9 Months
Lateral incisor8-10 Months15-21 Months
Canine (Cuspid)16-20 Months15-21 Months
First molar15-21 Months15-21 Months
Second molar20-24 Months20-24 Months

Illustration

Development of permanent teeth - Illustration Thumbnail

Development of permanent teeth

Both baby and permanent teeth have fairly well-defined times of eruption. The ages listed are the typical ages that permanent teeth fully emerge.

Ages that permanent teeth emerge
TYPE OF TOOTHUPPER TOOTH ERUPTS BY LOWER TOOTH ERUPTS BY
Central incisor7-8 years6-7 years
Lateral incisor8-9 years7-8 years
Canine (Cuspid)11-12 years9-10 years
First premolar (first bicuspid)10-11 years10-12 years
Second premolar (second bicuspid)10-12 years11-12 years
First molar6-7 years6-7 years
Second molar12-13 years11-13 years
Third molar (wisdom teeth)17-21 years17-21 years

Illustration

Tooth anatomy - Illustration Thumbnail

Tooth anatomy

The structure of the tooth includes dentin, pulp and other tissues, blood vessels and nerves imbedded in the bony jaw. Above the gum line, the tooth is protected by the hard enamel covering.

Illustration

Development of baby teeth - Illustration Thumbnail

Development of baby teeth

Both baby teeth (deciduous or milk teeth) and permanent teeth have fairly well-defined times of eruption. The ages listed are the normal ages that a baby tooth emerges.

Ages that a baby tooth emerges
TYPE OF TOOTHUPPER TOOTH ERUPTS BY LOWER TOOTH ERUPTS BY
Central incisor8-10 Months 6-9 Months
Lateral incisor8-10 Months15-21 Months
Canine (Cuspid)16-20 Months15-21 Months
First molar15-21 Months15-21 Months
Second molar20-24 Months20-24 Months

Illustration

Development of permanent teeth - Illustration Thumbnail

Development of permanent teeth

Both baby and permanent teeth have fairly well-defined times of eruption. The ages listed are the typical ages that permanent teeth fully emerge.

Ages that permanent teeth emerge
TYPE OF TOOTHUPPER TOOTH ERUPTS BY LOWER TOOTH ERUPTS BY
Central incisor7-8 years6-7 years
Lateral incisor8-9 years7-8 years
Canine (Cuspid)11-12 years9-10 years
First premolar (first bicuspid)10-11 years10-12 years
Second premolar (second bicuspid)10-12 years11-12 years
First molar6-7 years6-7 years
Second molar12-13 years11-13 years
Third molar (wisdom teeth)17-21 years17-21 years

Illustration

 
 
 
 

 

 
 

 
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