Dental health changes over the course of a lifetime. One development you can expect during your late teen or early adult years is the eruption of wisdom teeth, also called third molars.
If you experience pain when your wisdom teeth start to come in, one of the unerupted third molars could be impacted or infected. Sometimes patients want to proactively have the large teeth removed before they cause pain.
Wisdom teeth can be hard to clean, due to their location in the very back of the mouth. If yours erupt and develop normally, there’s a risk that they could create problems in the future if improper brushing and flossing allow decay to develop. However, some people retain all their wisdom teeth throughout life, without incident.
Schedule an appointment at the Southern Ontario Tooth Corner nearest you, to learn more about your wisdom teeth.
It is important for a dentist to monitor the development of wisdom teeth. The best way for us to see how wisdom teeth are developing is to look at x-rays. Examining your x-rays will show the dentist whether you have wisdom teeth, which stage of development they are in, and where their roots run within your jaw. The dentist will assess the position of your third molars, in relation to neighbouring teeth, as well.
Concerns can arise when wisdom teeth do not come in straight, in which case they may push against neighbouring teeth. This can lead to damage of the teeth being pushed, or the wisdom tooth my become stuck, unable to erupt. This situation is known as impaction. An impacted wisdom tooth usually needs to be extracted, to reduce the potential for harming neighbouring teeth and to eliminate recurring pain.
Not all mouths are large enough to accommodate four wisdom teeth. If your mouth has no room for third molars to come in, they will erupt and grow anyway. You may notice your front teeth shifting or overlapping, as the giant molars push all your teeth closer together. To avoid this orthodontic issue of crowding, wisdom teeth can be extracted. If tooth movement has already occurred, braces may be worn after extraction.
As stated earlier, wisdom teeth are large. Their roots can be complex and sometimes arched instead of straight. Big teeth with big roots in the back of your mouth can create jaw pain, particularly if swelling occurs. Some people feel a soreness and stiffness in the jaw, near the back of the mouth as wisdom teeth move.
If you do not experience pain or infection when your wisdom teeth come in, you may not need extractions. Most people have four wisdom teeth, though some have more, fewer, or none. The decision to keep or remove your third molars is best made in the teen years or early adulthood. As the molars develop and grow, their extraction becomes more invasive.
If you have retained wisdom teeth without problem well into your adult life, there’s probably no need to consider removal. Every patient has different needs. A talk with your Tooth Corner dentist will help you decide the best course of treatment for your case.
In Southern Ontario, the Tooth Corner dentist nearest you can help you decide whether you need wisdom teeth extractions. We perform extractions in our offices, and we accept insurance. Call us today to schedule your appointment.