Wisdom teeth are the third molars situated at the very back of the mouth on each side of the upper and lower jaw. They are the last pair of teeth to erupt in the gums. They are expected to appear when a person reaches his late teens or early twenties.
While wisdom teeth removal has become a rite of passage into adulthood in recent years, dental experts explain that this may not be needed in some cases. This dental procedure is advised only when one or all of the following problems are present:
1) Gum problems - Wisdom teeth which erupt partially cause pain and swelling because they push through the gum tissues and jaw bones deep into the mouth. This can lead to the formation of cysts or tumors in the gums and jaw bones.
2) Cavities - Deep pockets often form around wisdom teeth. These areas are hard to clean, so bacteria and food particles are most likely to breed there. Cavities can soon develop in these areas.
3) Sinus problems - Problems with wisdom teeth can affect your sinuses. This can lead to sinus pain, pressure and even congestion.
4) Damage to neighbouring teeth - The infection in the area of the wisdom teeth can pass to the roots of neighbouring teeth. When this happens, the infected teeth must be extracted together with the wisdom teeth.
5) Limited jaw movement - The position of your wisdom teeth can keep you from chewing your food properly. It can also cause you to bite your cheeks often.
6) Teeth alignment - The direction of growth of your wisdom teeth can affect the positioning of your other teeth. As result any type of dental work you've undergone - braces, bridges, crowns, partial dentures, etc. - might turn out to have been ineffective.
Surgery is not recommended when your wisdom teeth are fully erupted, healthy, functioning properly and positioned correctly. Your dentist will know how your wisdom teeth can affect your dental and overall health. So let him check and decide whether they need to be removed or not. If you need more information about wisdom teeth and their extraction, read this detailed infographic from Coburg Hill Oral Care.