Dentistry has been a leader in preventive care in many aspects including early, low risk wisdom tooth removal.
Did you know that the average mouth is made to hold only 28 teeth? Understandably, it can be very painful when 32 teeth try to fit in a mouth that holds only 28. These four, last to develop teeth are your third molars, also known as “wisdom teeth”. The most commonly asked question, do all wisdom teeth have to be removed? The answer is no, but it can be difficult in young patients to predict those that will need to have their wisdom teeth removed until the risk of complications has dramatically increased.
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 a pathway 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?
Poorly positioned impacted teeth can cause many problems. When they are improperly positioned, the opening around the tooth or between the wisdom tooth and the tooth in front of it allows bacteria to grow and will eventually cause an 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, resulting in the destruction of 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. Because dental care has dramatically improved, today’s teenage patient should be able to keep his or her erupted teeth a lifetime. Retained wisdom teeth usually are a threat to dental health.
Wisdom teeth are the last teeth to erupt in the mouth, typically around the age 14-17 and are removed in most cases during mid-teen years, before they can harm the other functional teeth. We recommend an initial consult around the age of 15 years old, but since many patients differ, consult your regular dentist or 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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