Most people think their permanent teeth all come in around the same time-throughout the ages of six to twelve. Then during their late teens or early twenties when problems arise with the back molars they don’t realize the pain and discomfort is a result of their wisdom teeth erupting. Generally because of the location of these teeth, there isn’t enough room in the back of the jaw to accommodate this last set of molars. Often this results in teeth struggling to erupt, misaligned teeth, nerve damage, jawbone pain and additional problems to the surrounding teeth. When wisdom teeth begin to erupt but are only able to partially break through, bacteria can enter around the stretched gum line and become infected. An impacted wisdom tooth is accompanied by swelling, pain, a general feeling of malaise and possibly even problems opening and closing the jaw. Along with these concerns, the tooth’s awkward position may make brushing and flossing difficult, resulting in both tooth decay and gum disease. Another common problem is food particles and plaque can become trapped in the soft tissue around the tooth creating gum tenderness, swelling, bleeding and bad breath.
The only way to determine if you have wisdom teeth which have not yet erupted is by having an X-Ray taken. Depending on your dental practitioner, they may suggest monitoring your wisdom teeth over a period of time to determine if their position and alignment could be changing. Often a dentist will recommend having your wisdom teeth extracted before problems occur, especially in younger patients since removal is easier and the healing process isn’t as difficult.
Concerned your wisdom teeth are impacted? Or maybe you aren’t sure if you even have wisdom teeth. Contact the caring staff at Ellis Dental today to schedule an appointment and have one less thing to worry about it when it comes to your oral health.