Wisdom teeth are the backmost molars of each row of teeth, and they usually erupt between the ages of 17 and 25. In some cases, people have wisdom teeth grow perfectly into their smiles without crowding. Wisdom teeth need to be removed before they erupt to prevent potential crowding problems.
There are many reasons to have your wisdom teeth removed before they arrive, and we’re going to touch on the most common;
Wisdom Tooth Impaction
If there is not enough room for wisdom teeth to come through to the surface, they can become impacted with your other molars. This force can shoe your second molars out of alignment and make them more difficult to clean, making them more susceptible to decay. Wisdom teeth often emerge sideways when they have limited space, which can cause pain and swelling by pushing on the other molars.
Why Do We Have Wisdom Teeth?
The short answer: you don’t need them at all now that modern cooking has made out diet more palatable. Our distant ancestors lived on fibrous plants and ate raw meat much more commonly. They needed these back molars to grind through their tough meals.
Our jaws adapted as a result of these changes in our diet. While our law became less broad however, our number of teeth remained constant. Now lots of people have too many teeth and not enough space to accommodate them all.
When we perform routine x-rays on our adolescent and young adult patients, we take a look at how the wisdom teeth are growing in: if the wisdom teeth are going to be a problem (like if they’re growing in sideways and will become impacted), removing them is usually recommended. A fully or partially impacted wisdom tooth is likely growing in at a weird angle, and it can cause pain and swelling by pushing on the other molars. It can even damage their roots, which have more permanent consequences. Partially erupted wisdom teeth are also difficult to clean, which can lead to tooth decay or gum disease. In some cases, a cyst can form around a fully impacted wisdom tooth.
Basically, there’s a lot that can go wrong where wisdom teeth are concerned. Even if a wisdom tooth grows in and isn’t impacted, it’s important to maintain good dental hygiene and check in with us to make sure everything’s okay back there!