Wisdom teeth are the third and final set of molars (grinding teeth) that come in for most people in their late teens or early twenties. These teeth can be a valuable asset to the mouth if they are healthy and properly aligned. However, more often, they are misaligned.
Why get them removed?
A wisdom tooth is extracted to prevent any complications that may come up in the future. Some of the problems that can occur when wisdom teeth come in are:
- There often is not enough room for them to come in properly, resulting in impaction
- Infection, damage to other teeth and bone and or a cyst can occur.
- Wisdom teeth often come in at an awkward angle, with the crown of the tooth facing forward, backward, or to either side.
How are they removed?
Once it has been determined that a wisdom tooth is problematic, extraction is usually suggested. Local anesthesia is administered to ensure the tooth can be pulled out without any major discomfort. A minor surgery is then performed where the tissue and bone around the wisdom tooth are removed so that the tooth can be cleanly extracted from the socket. Stitches may be needed to close the surgical site and promote healing of the overlying tissue.
How do I know if I have wisdom teeth?
With routine visits to your Dentist, wisdom teeth can be evaluated before they become a problem by a clinical exam and panoramic x-ray that helps assess the angle of eruption and state of development of the tooth.
Concerned you might have a problem with your wisdom teeth? Give us a call and we would be happy to help!