The 411 On Wisdom Teeth: 3 Questions You Need To Ask

From brushing and flossing to scheduling regular cleanings and exams with your dentist, caring for your mouth, teeth, and gums is not easy. Fortunately, with some effort and proper understanding, you can have a healthy and appealing smile. Of course, there are parts of your oral health that you may not understand completely. Your wisdom teeth, for instance, are not usually priorities unless they are causing problems. This guide will help you understand wisdom teeth by answering a few important questions regarding these out-of-sight, out-of-mind teeth.

What Are Wisdom Teeth?

Even though they are called wisdom teeth, your intellectual status does not necessarily matter when it comes to whether this third set of molars erupts or not.

In most cases, wisdom teeth will erupt between the ages of 17 and 21. These molars that erupt in the back of your mouth can be useful for chewing, but it is important to remember that not everyone will develop their wisdom teeth.

Your dentist will be able to determine whether you have wisdom teeth coming in or not with a simple set of x-rays. If you do have wisdom teeth developing, your dentist may or may not recommend having them removed. If you do not have wisdom teeth coming in, do not panic, since this can actually be a good thing.

Why Do Wisdom Teeth Need to Be Removed?

There are many instances where wisdom teeth erupt without any complications. The key is to continue brushing, flossing, and visiting your dentist for routine cleanings and exams to ensure these back molars are cared for properly along with your other teeth.

Unfortunately, many people will experience issues because of their wisdom teeth. Therefore, removal may be necessary.

If your dentist feels the wisdom teeth will or already are erupting in a misaligned manner, removal will be recommended. The misaligned or crooked eruption of these back molars will place pressure on your other teeth, which can lead to crowding and the potential shifting of your straight teeth. To reduce the risk of any negative effects on your current smile, surgical removal of the wisdom teeth will be imperative.

The eruption of wisdom teeth can also be painful for some people. Pain may be felt when eating and chewing, brushing your teeth, or sleeping. In some cases, the pain can be so severe, you will be unable to eat or sleep until the wisdom teeth are removed. This pain is most common if the wisdom tooth is erupting sideways, which places more pressure on adjacent teeth and your tooth roots, resulting in the intense pain.

Finally, infections are common as wisdom teeth are erupting. If they are erupting through the gum tissue slowly, for example, food and bacteria will build up on and in the gum tissue. This infection is known as pericoronitis. Without removing the wisdom tooth and treating the infection, pericoronitis can spread through the gum tissue, mouth, and even bloodstream.

Is Wisdom Tooth Extraction Dangerous?

Once you and your dentist determine that extracting the wisdom teeth is crucial, you may be worried about the actual procedure. Fortunately, removing wisdom teeth can be a safe and effective treatment for reducing pain and preventing further dental complications.

There are many different types of anesthesia that can be used to ensure you do not experience any pain or discomfort during the extraction. The type recommended will be based on how difficult the extraction may be.

For example, general anesthesia may be used if your dentist feels you should be completely asleep during the surgical extraction of wisdom teeth. If your dentist can remove the wisdom teeth in the dental chair, a local anesthesia may only be necessary.

Contact a clinic like RTC Dental to learn more about wisdom teeth.