What is enamel hypoplasia?

It is a tooth defect that results in less quality of enamel than normal. It ranges from

very small areas to an enre tooth being discolored or disfigured. Sometimes, it is only

an esthetic concern. Other times, these teeth can be sensitive and may be more

susceptible to cavities.

What does it look like?

It can change the color, size, shape or texture of the tooth. All or part of the tooth may

look more white or brown as compared to other teeth.


Hypoplasia on front permanent teeth

Hypoplasia on front permanent teeth


What causes it?

It is difficult to pinpoint the cause but it is thought that environmental and genetic

factors during tooth formation cause this condition. This includes trauma to the tooth

during formation, infections during pregnancy or infancy, hypoxia, and genetic



Hypoplasia on erupting six year molar

Hypoplasia on erupting six year molar


What needs to be done about it?

Treatment depends on the severity of the hypoplasia and if the patient is having

symptoms. In some cases, careful observation is enough. In minor cases, we can place

sealants. Dr. Lindhorst or Dr. Jadav may need to do a filling or place a stainless steel

crown to help protect the tooth. When the patient is older, he or she may need a full

coverage porcelain crown or veneers.


Dr. Jadav

Smiles for Kids Pediatric Dentistry