Wisdom Tooth Extraction
Wisdom teeth are the third molars that typically erupt in the very back of our mouths between the ages of 17-25. When the wisdom tooth erupts, the person may experience some pain or pressure during the process. Contrary to what many people believe, it is not always necessary to have wisdom teeth removed.
As long as the wisdom teeth are healthy, biting correctly, grown in completely, and basically, not creating any major problems, they don’t need to be removed. However, when the wisdom teeth don’t have enough room to grow properly, they may end up creating problems for the other teeth. Dentists can take X-rays and scans of the mouth to predict problems with the wisdom teeth even before they arise and may recommend an extraction. Normally, wisdom tooth extraction is recommended in the following scenarios:
When a wisdom tooth is impacted, it is not erupting in the correct position. This happens when another tooth or a bone is in the way. It can cause pain, swelling, and pressure. The pain may not be continuous but it is important to see the dentist as soon as you experience some pain or discomfort. In these cases, extraction is necessary. If more than one molar is impacted, extraction may be performed one at a time or all the molars may be removed at once.
Wisdom teeth can sometimes make eating a challenge. The third molars may press on the gums and cause gum swelling and discomfort. Wisdom teeth may also push against the other molars and lead to increased pressure. This can make brushing and eat more difficult. When fully emerged wisdom teeth cause functional issues such as bite complications, extraction may be necessary.
A wisdom tooth may not cause any symptoms for years. However, sometimes, a cyst may form around the third molar. In these cases, tooth extraction may be necessary. This is also the reason why regular dental check-ups are important so that any such pathologies are diagnosed in a timely manner.
Increased risk of oral health concerns
In some cases, the dentist may recommend wisdom tooth removal even if the teeth are not impacted and there is no sign of overcrowding. They may do so to reduce the risk of other oral health concerns. For example, if the wisdom teeth have cavities, the dentist may recommend a tooth extraction. The idea is to remove the tooth before it causes any serious pain, discomfort, or stress, and to ensure better overall oral health.
The wisdom teeth are often difficult to clean. This makes them more prone to infection. When the infection is severe, wisdom tooth extraction may become necessary. The only way you can minimize the risk of infection is by maintaining good oral hygiene with particular attention to the wisdom teeth.
There can be various other reasons why wisdom tooth extraction may become necessary. Your dentist can recommend the best course of action after thoroughly examining your dental X-rays and scans.
Signs that you may need a wisdom tooth extraction
According to the American Dental Association, wisdom teeth removal may be necessary if you experience problems such as:
- Fluid-filled sacs (cysts)
- Repeated infection of soft tissue behind the lower last tooth
- Gum disease
- Damage to neighboring teeth
- Extensive tooth decay
If you are experiencing pain and discomfort around your wisdom tooth, do not ignore it. Some amount of pain and discomfort is normal but it is best to visit a dentist. The dentist can examine your teeth and determine whether or not wisdom tooth extraction is necessary.