What Are Wisdom Teeth?
Wisdom teeth or the third morals are the last teeth to come all the way through. They are the last set of morals which grows at the four corners of the mouth. Usually, you get third morals in your teens or early twenties.
It is not always necessary to remove the third morals. But, it is usually recommended to remove the wisdom teeth as their misalignment can lead to extreme pain and even infection. Due to less space for teeth, the third morals can get stuck. Hence, wisdom teeth erupt either partially or don’t erupt at all. These teeth that have grown partly or not erupted at all are called impacted teeth.
Why Do I Need To Remove My Wisdom Teeth?
People remove wisdom teeth due to complications that may occur such as:
1. Partially Emerged Wisdom Teeth
If the third molars erupt to some extent, but not fully, your teeth can fall prey to an acute bacterial infection called pericoronitis. Pericoronitis is similar to an inflammation which, if left untreated, can lead to the spread of severe infection around the gums, cheeks, and jaws.
2. Wisdom Teeth That Do Not Emerge At All
The wisdom teeth that don’t erupt at all might lead to internal damage for blood vessels and gums. These fully impacted wisdom teeth can cause a cyst. A dental cyst is like a pocket under gums that can be made up of tissue, air, fluid, and other different substances. It can lead to extreme pain and swelling around your jaws.
3. Other Oral Diseases
The misalignment of third morals can lead to multiple oral infections as well as diseases. Tooth decay is one of the most common oral diseases. However, according to researchers, people having impacted third molars have the highest risk of falling prey to tooth decay. It is because the partially impacted wisdom teeth easily trap food pieces between the gum and partially erupted tooth.
Do I Need My Wisdom Teeth To Be Removed?
If your wisdom teeth are leading you towards pain and infection, then you should immediately consult a dentist. The extraction of wisdom teeth is often thought of as a painful and lengthy procedure. However, that is a myth. The removal of third morals isn’t an extended surgery and the recovery period is fairly simple. Here are a few signs that you should consult your Houston dentist about wisdom teeth removal:
- Repeated infection of soft tissue behind the lower last tooth
- Fluid-filled sacs (cysts)
- Damage to nearby teeth
- Gum disease
- Extensive tooth decay
Removal of Wisdom Teeth
The removal of third morals is one of the most common tooth extraction surgeries. The procedure of tooth extraction may seem like a hassle but if the problem is ignored it can lead to long-term hurdles for your oral health. You can remove them one at a time, or all at once.
Before starting the surgery for an impacted wisdom tooth, the doctor will initially conduct an X-ray to ensure that the surgery can be performed safely. When the obstruction is detected, the procedure of surgery starts. Firstly, the doctor would inject local anesthesia to numb the tooth and then an incision or small cut is made to erupt the tooth. Further steps are performed to remove the tooth, clean the site of the removed tooth, and stitch the wound closed in order to promote healing. This process normally takes around 20-25 minutes to complete the surgery.
Dentists traditionally prescribe a period of 7 to 10 days after the surgery so that the stitches can dissolve. However, some preventative measures must be implemented for at least 24 hours for best results:
Risk Factors for Extraction of Wisdom Teeth
Just like other surgeries, wisdom teeth removal also has some complicated risk factors. The following are some of the complications:
- You might get an infection on the site where the surgery was performed. The most common signs of having an oral infection include discharge of yellow or white fluid from the wound, pain, temperature, and swelling.
- The most common problem faced is a dry socket. Dry socket, also known as alveolar osteitis, is a place where blood clots either fail to develop or disappear. The problem lasts up to 3 to 5 days after wisdom teeth removal.
- Your wound may start bleeding unpredictably.
If you experience any of these complications, immediately contact your Houston dental surgeon. Follow the instructions of your surgeon and follow the recommended precautionary measures.
Benefits of Wisdom Teeth Removal
If you go for wisdom teeth extraction then you will avoid the following problems:
Misalignment of Teeth
When a wisdom tooth erupts, it tries to make space in an already crowded environment. As the tooth emerges, it disturbs the adjacent teeth. The wisdom tooth creates a crooked structure and destroys your smile. Beyond the cosmetics of a crooked smile, misaligned teeth can cause excess wear and tear on the teeth, gums, and jaw muscles, resulting in cracked teeth, jaw strain, temporomandibular joint disorder, and chronic headaches. If your teeth are misaligned, they can affect the way you articulate sound, causing problems with speech.
When partially impacted wisdom teeth combine with adjacent molars, the limited space traps bacteria. The reduced amount of space between teeth might lead to gum inflammation. Gum inflammation is a type of periodontal disease that promotes swelling, pain, and warm temperature. Once gum inflammation starts in your mouth, it’s very difficult to get rid of.
Cysts or Tiny Tumors
An impacted wisdom tooth can lead to tiny tumors or cysts. The tiny pockets, namely cysts, are extremely dangerous. Cysts grow on the jaw bone and can swell to be quite large and ultimately increase the orofacial pain.
If you have wisdom teeth then you will likely have long term hygiene problems. However, the removal of wisdom teeth can save your annual dental hygiene expenses.
Chew Good. Look Good. Feel Good.
It can be easy to lose sight of a few important things. One thing which often gets overlooked is the importance of your oral health. At Antoine Dental Center in Houston, TX, we’re proud to offer the convenience of same-day dental cleanings and exams and quality procedures for everything from braces to dental implants. Schedule an appointment and see why our patients love us.
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