You may have been dreading having your or your loved one’s wisdom teeth extracted. But did you know that not everyone gets wisdom teeth? If you’re in the lucky 10%-20% lacking some of all of your wisdom teeth — the third and final set of molars that emerge at the back of the mouth in your late teens or early 20s — you may not have to think about removal.
For the majority of people in America, however, having your wisdom teeth extracted has almost become a rite of passage. You may be wondering if having these teeth removed is really necessary. The team at The Woodlands Dental Group in The Woodlands, Texas, can give you the information you need to make an informed decision.
There’s a chance your wisdom teeth can be healthy, but for many people, they cause serious complications. We want to help you understand wisdom teeth and how to know if you need extraction.
The back of your jaw can become crowded as your adult molars grow in. When there isn’t enough room in your jaw, your wisdom teeth may not be able to fully erupt, or breakthrough your gums completely, leading to impacted teeth.
This is especially true of wisdom teeth, which are the last to emerge of all adult teeth. But even when this third set of molars does erupt, the teeth can cause serious problems by pushing your other teeth out of alignment, growing in the wrong direction, and causing tooth decay or other complications, like infection or cysts.
You don’t always have noticeable symptoms of problems with these molars until the damage has reached the roots of the wisdom teeth. In this case, the extraction may be more complicated and painful.
Signs your wisdom teeth are growing in include:
At The Woodlands Dental Group, we evaluate your overall dental health and the progress of your wisdom teeth to provide the best comprehensive care possible and prevent oral complications. Sometimes it’s better to remove wisdom teeth before the roots form fully for a less complicated surgery with faster recovery.
Some wisdom teeth erupt as fully functional and in a position that doesn’t interfere with your other teeth. In these cases, your wisdom teeth may not require extraction. Your dentist can determine whether removal is a good idea for you through a thorough oral exam.
Your wisdom teeth may not need to be extracted if they are:
The best way to learn about your wisdom teeth is through a comprehensive oral exam with an experienced dentist. In addition to providing extractions at The Woodlands Dental Group, we offer a full line of dental services to meet all of your oral health needs.
For an evaluation of your wisdom teeth, call our office in The Woodlands, Texas, to schedule your appointment today.