- West Yorkshire eight-year-old suffers from ‘paediatric shark teeth’ condition
- Zak Brown’s friends at school have now nicknamed him ‘Jaws’
- The problem occurs when child’s permanent teeth fail to push out baby teeth
- Zak is expected to have two rows of teeth for another three years
An eight-year-old boy – nicknamed ‘Jaws’ by his friends – has grown a second row of teeth after suffering from a condition known as ‘paediatric shark teeth’.
Zak Brown, from Wakefield, West Yorkshire, must spend extra time brushing and visiting the dentist to maintain his two sets after his baby teeth did not fall out when his permanent teeth pushed through the gums.
And Zak’s condition also means he has suffered the cruel misfortune of not losing a tooth before growing too old to believe in the tooth fairy.
However, he did lose his first baby tooth last week and it is hoped it will signal the start of normality for Zak.
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Zak Brown (pictured) has two rows of teeth – leading to the nickname ‘Jaws’
Zak has a second set of teeth growing behind his baby teeth on both his upper and lower jaws
His mother, civil servant Claire, 38, suspected something was wrong when he got his first extra tooth through.
‘It looked really odd, and they kept on coming. All the while he wasn’t losing his baby teeth.’
What was actually happening inside Zak’s mouth was that his permanent teeth, which would usually help push out baby teeth, were coming through.
But instead they came in behind the first teeth and failed to move the baby ones out.
So while his older sister, Niamh, 10, and younger brother, Finley, six, were cashing in on the tooth fairy, Zak was getting frustrated.
She said: ‘It did bother him. It doesn’t hurt and he has no problems eating but he would complain and wish his teeth would come out whenever they lost a tooth.
‘He was gutted. He would try and wiggle and wiggle his teeth to make them come out but nothing ever happened.
‘But he’s got used to it now. His friends call him ‘Jaws’ because he’s got a second set of teeth just like sharks do.’
Zak’s first permanent tooth came through about a year ago, with the others following shortly after.
The eight-year-old’s first permanent tooth came through about a year ago, with the others following shortly after
Both she and Zak’s father, engineer Richard, 45, from Leeds, West Yorkshire, were pleased when he finally lost his first baby tooth.
She said: ‘We gave him £10 to a-bait him. It’s funny because he’s so old now he doesn’t even believe in the tooth fairy anymore.’
Zak is such a showman that if anybody asks about his teeth, he is happy to show them.
The footy-mad lad is now on a waiting list to get his baby teeth extracted to allow other adult to come through. He will then more than likely need a brace.
But, she said: ‘Unfortunately there is now a good two or three year wait to see the orthodontist.
VISITS FROM THE TOOTH FAIRY: BABY VS PERMANENT TEETH
All children are born with 20 teeth know as the child’s baby, or milk, teeth. These teeth usually start breaking through the gums and exposing when the child is about 6-months-old.
They remain in the child’s formative years but begin to fall out when they reach the age of five or six – often with the first to arrive being the first to go.
As they start falling out, they are replaced by permanent teeth breaking through the gums. These remain with the child for the rest of their life.
Permanent teeth are more yellow than baby teeth and they have longer roots. They also feature things called mamelons – these are the bumps on the edge of the permanent teeth which give them a serrated appearance.
‘We have been told we can go private if we chose but I imagine that may cost a lot of money.
‘It is something I’d like to sort out sooner rather than later, though, because although it doesn’t hurt and he has no trouble eating it is starting to affect his speech slightly because he has too many teeth in his mouth.’
The condition – known as paediatric shark teeth – can affect as many as one in 10 children although it is thought not many cases are as striking as Zak’s.
It occurs when an adult tooth doesn’t exert enough pressure on the baby tooth it is under, or does not have enough room to emerge.
It then takes the easier route and grows behind the baby teeth – causing the baby tooth root to take longer to dissolve and the child is left with two sets of teeth.