Wisdom teeth are a third set of molars that usually appear between the ages of 17-21. Although originally thought to have evolved to aid in eating raw meats and veggies, they are usually considered not functional nowadays and can crowd the mouth. This can create dental problems in the future if teeth are too crowded, leading to difficulties in maintaining oral hygiene and an increased risk of cavities and other complications. In this blog post, we will discuss some of the warning signs that your wisdom teeth may be impacting and require removal or additional treatment.
For most people, wisdom teeth will begin to appear between the ages of 17 and 21. Most dentists will recommend an initial assessment in teenagers aged 16-19 to determine if the wisdom teeth will need to be removed. As you age, removal can become more difficult, which is why most people get them removed during this time. Some dentists will even recommend removing the wisdom teeth as a precautionary measure during this age, even if a patient is not yet experiencing any symptoms.
Impacted Wisdom Teeth
As wisdom teeth develop and try to emerge as normal molars, sometimes they can become “impacted.” This means that one of more of the teeth do not have enough space to fully emerge. When these teeth are constricted by the gums and spacing in the mouth, they are unable to develop normally and can cause a variety of symptoms. This can include gum issues such as swelling, tenderness or bleeding as well as jaw complications such as pain, swelling or stiffness. Some patients may also notice they have difficulty opening their mouth or are experiencing bad breath. All these symptoms can be signs of impacted wisdom teeth or other teeth problems that will require assessment and treatment by a dentist.
How Do I Treat Impacted Wisdom Teeth?
In order to treat impacted wisdom teeth, most dentists will recommend completely removing the wisdom teeth. Although this is a surgical procedure, it will usually be performed by your dentist and will use either local or general anaesthetic. For many people, they can live with their wisdom teeth without any complications. However, if your wisdom teeth are impacted or you are worried about impaction, it may be time to consider removing your wisdom teeth.
One of the best ways to prevent impacted wisdom teeth is to visit your dentist regularly. Frequent check-ups and x-rays will allow your dentist to keep an eye on your wisdom teeth to determine if they need to be removed. Of course, this should also be paired with a comprehensive oral healthcare routine to ensure you are keeping your mouth clean and healthy.
If you are looking for a dentist in the Greater Toronto Area, Dr. Lloyd Pedvis and his team at Mackenzie Dental Centre currently serve the Vaughan, Woodbridge and Maple areas. An experienced family and cosmetic dentist, Dr. Pedvis and his team are experts when it comes to wisdom teeth consultations and removal. For more information or to book your appointment, contact us today at 905-417-8700.