Dental Tips Blog

Aug
29

When Are Wisdom Teeth a Problem?

Young adults and parents of teens often wonder: “do my wisdom teeth need to be removed?” It’s a common question that dentists hear on a routine basis, and one that a lot of people feel they need to ask. Wisdom tooth removal seems like a rite of passage into adulthood for some, while other people never experience problems whatsoever.

Wisdom teeth may be taken out due to existing problems, or as a proactive measure to prevent complications. Here are a few reasons why your dentist may recommend wisdom tooth removal:

Impaction against other teeth

If wisdom teeth are impacted against the adjacent tooth, it can cause damage to the healthy tooth. Tooth resorption, decay, or crowded teeth are just a few examples. Your dentist can tell if wisdom teeth are impacted against the other teeth by taking a full-mouth panoramic X-ray. 

Partial eruption

Wisdom teeth can sometimes only erupt a small way into the mouth – leaving an opening in the gum tissue for food or bacteria to creep underneath. Infection like cysts, periodontal disease, cavities, and abscesses can easily develop in these conditions. 

Inability to keep the tooth clean

Sometimes wisdom teeth will come in perfectly straight, without any problem whatsoever. Ideally no problems will occur, but sometimes it may be difficult to even keep these teeth clean even with the best oral hygiene. The location of these teeth as well as the anatomy of the jaws may make it where even your dentist can hardly see the tooth, even if it is fully erupted. In circumstances such as these, wisdom teeth often become infected and may cause a chain reaction to their neighboring teeth.

Regular dental check-ups and X-rays are a perfect way to predict what will happen with you or your child’s wisdom teeth!

Posted on behalf of Dr. Michael Mansouri, Marietta Family Dental Care, P.C.

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