Can I Keep My Wisdom Teeth?

May 27, 2015

Have you ever wondered what wisdom teeth are and why so many people have them removed?

Third molars have been called wisdom teeth for years, dating back to the Seventeenth Century. Wisdom teeth generally erupt between the ages of 17 and 25, or when a person has matured and become wiser.

The wisdom teeth (3rd molars) are the last of all 32 teeth to erupt. Because these teeth sit all the way in the back of the mouth there often just isn’t enough room for them to come in. When this happens it’s called a partial eruption or impacted tooth. dreamstime_xs_46715240

A partially erupted tooth is a problem because the tooth traps plaque and bacteria. Wisdom teeth sit in the back of the mouth and are not easy to clean properly making them susceptible to cavities and infection.

Impacted teeth may or may not cause problems. Some patients keep impacted teeth for a lifetime while other patients have severe pain. For patients having severe pain we suggest removal.
Other problems that can occur with wisdom teeth include creating gum and bone issues. We watch to make sure no disease is present from the wisdom teeth and also to ensure that damage is not being done to the adjacent teeth t.

Typically a patient will tell us if he/she is feeling pressure associated with the eruption. We also use x-ray technology to monitor eruption. Once the wisdom teeth reach a certain point in development and the doctor determines if the teeth are healthy or not is when a decision is typically made for extraction.

Lima Dental Associates offers several options for removal of wisdom teeth. Our doctors evaluate and make specific recommendations to each patient.
There are rare cases that must be referred to an oral surgeon/ specialist. For routine cases, our staff and doctors are highly trained at all 4 of our locations to perform the removal of wisdom teeth.

Until next time,
Keep smiling, sharing, and caring!