Dental development or odontogenesis is a very complex process that begins even before birth. Both deciduous teeth (primary or baby teeth) and permanent teeth (secondary or adult teeth) undergo a development process that involves a sequence of steps. Several problems can occur during the formation and eruption of teeth. Early diagnosis of these tooth development disorders can help improve aesthetic and functional treatment outcomes.
Dentists need to assign the appropriate diagnosis code for tooth development disorders in patient records and in claims submitted to insurance companies. Outsourced dental billing services can ensure complete, accurate and timely claims using the right codes.
Different Types of Tooth Developmental Disorders
Teeth comprise many different internal and external structures with clearly demarcated developmental processes. Any disturbances in these processes can lead to changes within the tooth’s structure. Dentists can identify and treat children with abnormal dental development and optimize their oral health. There are five types of tooth development defects:
5 Types of Tooth Development Defects
- Tooth eruption problems: Tooth eruption problems manifest in various ways:
- Impacted permanent teeth – baby teeth completely block erupting permanent teeth or a tooth grows sideways, either before or during the eruption process.
- Hypodontia – the condition where permanent teeth never develop. Hypodontia often occurs in the form of missing wisdom teeth.
- Misplaced permanent teeth or ectopic eruption – permanent tooth may appear completely out of position.
- Agenesis – This is a congenital condition where one or more teeth are missing. It is usually diagnosed in early childhood. There are three types of agenesis, which are all genetic disorders:
- Anodontia – absence of all teeth, a syndrome that includes other abnormalities.
- Hypodontia – absence of 1 to 5 teeth
- Oligodontia – absence of six or more teeth
- Exfoliation problems – Tooth exfoliation refers to the process of shedding primary teeth and their replacement by permanent teeth. This usually takes place from six to twelve years of age. Premature exfoliation refers to loss of teeth before the normal expected period and delayed exfoliation refers to delay in losing primary or baby teeth.
- Enamel defects: Developmental defects of enamel (DDE) are typically classified into three groups: demarcated opacity, diffuse opacity and hypoplasia.
- Opacities or hypomineralization defects impact the translucency of enamel
- Hypoplasia is characterized by thin or absent enamel. This condition is already present at the time the affected tooth first erupts from the gums. It can occur on only part of a tooth’s surface or affect the entire tooth.
- Dentin defects – Dentinogenesis imperfect and dentin dysplasia are hereditary dentin disorders. These conditions are characterized by abnormal dentin structure affecting either the primary or both deciduous teeth and permanent teeth.
Not all developmental dental anomalies are congenital. They may be inherited, acquired, or idiopathic.
ICD-10 Codes for Tooth Developmental Disorders
Pediatric dentists are knowledgeable about the development of children’s teeth and the stages involved and can diagnose anomalies in tooth development. When a dental defect is identified, the dentist will evaluate the moment it began to interfere in the normal developmental pattern of dental anatomy. Early detection and diagnosis of dental anomalies are essential to develop a thorough and effective treatment plan.
The ICD-10 codes for development tooth disorders are as follows:
- K00 disorders of tooth development and eruption
- K00.0 Anodontia – congenitally missing teeth – complete or partial
- K00.1 – supernumerary teeth – mesiodens
- K00.2 Abnormailities of tooth size and form – concrescence, fusion, gemination, dens evaginatus, dens in dente, dens invaginatus, enamel pearls, macrodontia, microdontia, peg-shaped teeth, taurodontism and tuberculum paramolare
- K00.3 mottled teeth – Fluorosis
- K00.4 Disturbances in tooth eruption – Enamel hypoplasia, dilaceration, Turner
- K00.5 Hereditary disturbances in tooth structure, not elsewhere classified – Amylo/dentino-genisis imperfecta
- K00.6 Disturbances in tooth eruption – Natal/neonatal teeth, retained deciduous tooth, premature, late
- K00.7 Teething syndrome – teething
- K00.8 Other disorders of tooth development – Colour changes due to blood incompatability, biliary, porphyria, tetyracy
- K00.9 Disorders of tooth development, unspecified
If unrecognized, tooth developmental disorders can impact aesthetics and malocclusion, and more importantly, may increase risks for the development of dental caries and periodontal diseases. Abnormalities in tooth development may also pose treatment difficulties. Early diagnosis can help can help providers determine appropriate management and treatment strategies, As they focus on patient care, dental billing companies can help dentist assign the correct diagnosis codes in conjunction with procedure information on claims to support the medical necessity for the service rendered for appropriate reimbursement.