It's a common misconception that everyone needs to get their wisdom teeth removed. Many people live their whole lives with fully grown wisdom teeth and never experience any problems. But for many more people, it will become necessary to remove them at some point, and the consequences can be severe if you wait too long.
Why Do Wisdom Teeth Need to Be Removed?
Wisdom teeth are actually the third molars and final set of molars you develop, and they are located in the very back of your mouth. In many cases, they don't have enough room to grow properly and can affect the alignment of your teeth, attract bacteria and promote tooth decay, and cause persistent pain as they start to develop.
When Do Most People Get Their Wisdom Teeth Removed?
For most people, the wisdom teeth don't even start to develop until the late teens or early twenties. Some people elect to have them removed as soon as they develop, and with no indication that they will become a problem, simply because they want to avoid any possible issues down the road.
Extraction becomes more difficult once the roots of the wisdom teeth take hold. Also, recovery times are faster in younger patients. The best policy is to consult with a dentist or oral surgeon who can perform an X-ray and tell you when and if your wisdom teeth need to be removed.
What are the Signs the Wisdom Teeth Must Be Removed?
As we said earlier, many people get their wisdom teeth removed before they present any problems. But if they are left in and allowed to develop, these are the signs that they likely need to be extracted:
- Pain in the jaw, not necessarily around the site of the wisdom teeth
- Infection in the soft tissue around the wisdom teeth
- Cysts that develop in the mouth
- Tumors that develop in the mouth
- Damage caused to nearby teeth
- Persistent and severe gum disease
- Extensive tooth decay
If you experience any of these symptoms, contact an oral health professional immediately.
The Happy Tooth Makes Wisdom Teeth Removal Easy
At The Happy Tooth, we can tell you if you are a likely candidate for wisdom teeth removal and then refer you to a great local oral surgeon. We have helped countless patients get thorough this process with as little pain and interruption as possible. If you think your wisdom teeth might be becoming a problem, book an appointment at one of our offices at your earliest convenience.