Many times, dentists recommend extracting wisdom teeth to avoid complications. However, some situations do not require an extraction. In this article, our team at Above and Beyond Dentistry in Lawrenceville, GA., has put together a list of tell-tale signs for wisdom tooth extraction. If you notice any of these signs, visit your dentist for an assessment.
What Are Wisdom Teeth?
Wisdom teeth are the molars located at the back end of the mouth, one in each corner. Wisdom teeth are commonly extracted. However, no extraction is required if:
- You have healthy and fully erupted wisdom teeth
- The wisdom teeth are positioned and aligned properly
- You are able to clean them without any difficulty
What Are the Potential Underlying Problems?
Wisdom teeth usually erupt in your late teens or early twenties and do so without causing too much discomfort. However, because, by this age, the adult teeth are all in their proper positions, in some cases, wisdom teeth do not have enough room to erupt. In such cases, they may cause problems such as:
- Erupt at different angles or even horizontally
- Remain hidden or trapped in the jaw (impacted teeth)
- Emerge only partially
- Affect the adjoining teeth
When Should You See the Dentist?
Wisdom tooth extraction is typically recommended if one or more of the following symptoms persist:
- Severe pain in the tooth and jaw
- Repeated soft tissue infections (Pericoronitis)
- Presence of cysts (fluid-filled sacs)
- Abscess (Pus formation in wisdom tooth and adjoining tissue)
- Presence of tumors
- Periodontal disease (Gingivitis or gum disease)
- Extensive tooth decay
- Inflammation in gums
Indirect Signs to Look Out For:
- Bad breath
- Bad taste in the mouth
- Sinus problems – Dental issues can cause sinus issues. If you experience any pressure or pain in your sinuses, these can be the warning signs.
Do Dentists Always Recommend Wisdom Tooth Extraction?
The answer is NO. Many of the symptoms above can be managed with antibiotics and anti-inflammatory medication.
What Are the Risks Involved?
Although there are certain risks involved in any tooth extraction, a qualified and experienced dentist can ensure the procedure runs smoothly.
Potential discomfort after the procedure may include:
- Gum swelling and sensitivity
- Jaw pain