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3 Reasons Wisdom Teeth Need to Be Removed

October 28, 2020

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , — drwardlaw @ 2:07 am

Model of patient needing wisdom tooth removal. Between the age of 13 and 25, the third set of molars erupts in the back of the mouth called the wisdom teeth. Although they once helped us grind and chew foods, they no longer serve a purpose. In fact, most people need to have them extracted. Research shows 75% of the population will need wisdom tooth removal but is an extraction really necessary? Here are the top 3 reasons people need to have their wisdom teeth taken out.

Why do wisdom teeth need to be removed?

Each year, over 10 million wisdom teeth are extracted. Although it’s a routine procedure, your dentist will only recommend it under certain circumstances, such as:

  1. Infection

90% of people in their 20s have at least one wisdom tooth that hasn’t fully erupted.

If a tooth is partially or fully trapped under the gum tissue, it can lead to a localized infection called pericoronitis. When there it’s enough room for the tooth to erupt, the gingival tissue surrounding it can become irritated and infected. It’s common to experience reoccurring pain, swelling, and difficulty chewing

2. Cysts

Impacted wisdom teeth also contribute to the formation of cysts, which are fluid-filled sacs inside the jawbone. They can slowly expand over time, destroying the supporting bone and teeth. If they aren’t extracted during the teen years, it can be more difficult to treat the cysts as time passes. In rare instances, tumors are also linked with their delayed extraction.

3. Overcrowding

Few people have adequate space in their mouth to accommodate an additional set of molars. As a result, overcrowding is a common problem. If there isn’t enough room for them to erupt, they can damage the second molar. You’ll have an increased risk of tooth decay, gum disease, and even bone loss because of the teeth being too close together.

Do I need to have my wisdom teeth taken out?

It’s best to have your first wisdom tooth consultation around the age of 16, but it’s never too late to schedule an appointment, especially if you have tooth pain. Your dentist will perform a thorough visual examination and take digital X-rays to determine if your third molars need to be removed. If they determine it’s in your best interest, they will recommend either a simple or surgical extraction. A simple extraction is used when the tooth is completely visible above the gum line while a surgical procedure is needed if it is fully or partially trapped beneath the gum tissue.

If your wisdom teeth are giving you grief, it’s time to see if they need to be extracted. Your dentist can stop your pain and improve your smile.

About Dr. Stephen Wardlaw

Dr. Stephen Wardlaw earned his dental degree from the Baylor College of Dentistry. He has continued his training to offer many areas of specialty to treat complex issues, like tooth extractions. He uses advanced techniques to improve the health and function of his patients’ smiles. If you need a wisdom tooth removal in Arlington, contact our office today.

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