Did you know that the average mouth is only intended to hold 28 teeth? It can be very painful when 32 teeth try to fit in a mouth only made to house 28. These last four teeth, your third molars, are known as “wisdom teeth.” Less than 10% of people worldwide will “get to keep” their wisdom teeth for their entire life.
WHY SHOULD YOU REMOVE YOUR WISDOM TEETH?
When wisdom teeth align properly and the surrounding gum tissue is healthy, wisdom teeth do not have to be removed. Unfortunately, this does not usually happen.
The extraction of wisdom teeth is necessary when they are prevented from properly erupting within the mouth. Impacted teeth can take many positions in the bone, as they attempt to find pathways that will allow them to erupt successfully. They may grow sideways, partially emerge from the gum, or even remain trapped beneath the gum and bone.
WHAT CAN HAPPEN IF YOU DON’T REMOVE YOUR WISDOM TEETH?
Impacted teeth can cause many problems. When improperly positioned, the opening around the tooth or between the wisdom tooth and the tooth in front of it are hot spots for bacterial growth, which can eventually lead to infection. The result: swelling, stiffness, pain, and illness.
Impacted or even abnormally erupted wisdom teeth can cause significant problems with the teeth in front of them (second molars); this includes decay or bone loss, resulting in loss of the second molars. The most serious problem occurs when a tumor or cyst forms around the impacted wisdom tooth, destroying the jawbone and healthy neighboring teeth.
WHEN SHOULD YOU REMOVE YOUR WISDOM TEETH?
Removal of the offending impacted tooth or teeth usually resolves these problems. Early removal is recommended to avoid such future problems and to decrease the surgical risk involved with the procedure.
Wisdom teeth are the last teeth to erupt in the mouth, typically breaking through around ages 14 to 17. They are removed in most cases during the mid-teen years before they can harm the other functional teeth. We recommend an initial consult around the age of 15. Contact our Ocoee Oral Surgery office for more information and solutions on wisdom teeth removal in Cleveland, TN, and the surrounding area.
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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT WISDOM TEETH REMOVAL
What happens if I don’t remove my wisdom teeth? Not removing wisdom teeth can lead to serious dental issues like damage to surrounding teeth, jaw damage, and infection in the gums.
Why do wisdom teeth cause problems? These third molars come in at an angle or don’t fully emerge at times.
What are some of the symptoms of wisdom teeth pushing in? Symptoms include pain in the jaw, swelling around the gums, tenderness, and even a discharge if an infection is present.
Can wisdom teeth damage my other teeth? Your wisdom teeth can damage adjacent teeth and cause overcrowding.
What does it mean when a wisdom tooth is impacted? If a wisdom tooth doesn’t break through the gums because there’s not enough space for it, then it is considered impacted. There are 4 types of impacted teeth: Soft Tissue Impacted, Partial Boney Impacted, Complete Boney Impacted, and Unusual Difficulty of Impacted Tooth.
Can I brush my teeth after wisdom teeth removal? Please avoid brushing your teeth and gargling for the first 24 hours, but after a day you can gently resume brushing your teeth.
What else should I avoid after wisdom teeth removal? Excessive spitting, drinking through straws, and drinking hot liquids, such as coffee and soup, should be avoided as well.
When do wisdom teeth typically come in? Wisdom teeth typically break through around ages 14 to 17.