As the last of your 32 teeth to erupt, impacted wisdom teeth are a common problem that dentists see in people’s mouths every day.
Here are some of the most common questions dentists hear about wisdom teeth.
How old do you need to be to remove them?
Wisdom teeth begin to erupt at the age of 18-25. Depending on the type and severity of the teeth affected, you may need to have your wisdom teeth removed anywhere around the age of 17-18. Wisdom teeth can be removed at any age; however, in adolescents and young adults in their early 20s, there is less chance of serious complications from surgery because wisdom teeth have less developed roots and lower jaw bone density, making them easier to remove.
Symptoms of impact
Affected wisdom teeth are often associated with pain and toothache, but may be accompanied by a range of symptoms, including:
- Damaged adjacent teeth
- gum disease
- Tooth decay (if restoration of the tooth is not possible or desirable)
Do you still need to remove them if they don’t hurt?
unnecessary. An affected wisdom tooth may never show symptoms, but it can still put you at risk for potential complications.
Do you need to remove them even if they are affected?
If your wisdom teeth are affected, it doesn’t necessarily mean they need to be removed. Your dentist will need to assess the history of symptoms and risk of subsequent complications in order to make a decision. Sometimes it may be decided to monitor the affected wisdom teeth with regular checkups.
Complications of impact
Complications of impacted wisdom teeth include damage to other teeth, swelling or abscesses, decay of surrounding teeth, and gum disease. Each of these conditions is related to your wisdom teeth not growing into your mouth properly, which can create food traps that are difficult to clean and lead to infections.
Will you have problems if you don’t remove them?
If your dentist recommends that you need to have your wisdom teeth removed, you may be at risk for complications that would be prevented if you had your wisdom teeth removed.
How will your dentist decide if you need your wisdom teeth removed?
Your dentist will perform a comprehensive dental examination, including your symptoms and health history, an evaluation of your teeth and gums, and dental images, including X-rays, to confirm the diagnosis of your affected wisdom teeth.
Depending on the severity of the affected wisdom teeth, there are various surgical risks. These include pain and swelling around the gums and extraction sockets. Bleeding for up to 24 hours. Difficulty opening mouth and jaw. Damage to existing teeth. Dry socket, which is inflammation of the socket. Numbness of the lips, tongue, and mouth can occur after the anesthetic wears off, due to inflammation or damage to the nerves that run through the jaw.
Post-operative recovery time
The general recovery period is a few days, and you may need to plan some time off. However, in some cases, swelling, pain, and jaw opening may be affected for several weeks after surgery. While discomfort is a normal side effect of wisdom tooth surgery, you should contact your dentist if you experience unusual symptoms such as pus, large swelling, severe pain or swelling.
You have two options for removing your wisdom teeth. The first is local anesthesia in the dental chair. The second is under dental sedation or general anesthesia and can be performed by an oral surgeon. Your doctor will recommend which method is best for you.
Is anxiety normal before surgery?
Yes! Many people experience dental phobia before surgery. If you are uncomfortable with these things, you should discuss them with your dental hygienist.