Wisdom teeth usually do not push through the gums until people are in their late teens, twenties or even older. Wisdom teeth are usually the last teeth to come through the gums. If the jaw does not have enough room for the wisdom teeth to come through, the teeth will become impacted.
Often one or more wisdom teeth will cause problems and must be removed. If your wisdom teeth start to cause you problems, your dentist may recommend that it be removed. Troublesome wisdom teeth should usually be removed as soon as possible before they become a problem at an inconvenient time.
Wisdom teeth can be removed under either local anaesthetic in the chair or under general anaesthetic in the hospital. We do offer both options here at our clinic.
Problems caused by wisdom teeth
When an impacted wisdom tooth starts to erupt through the gum, an infection can start around the tooth. Infection and inflammation can cause pain, swelling and jaw stiffness.
Pressure from the wisdom teeth may cause pain in the teeth next to them.
Wisdom teeth may push nearby teeth out of their correct position and could be a cause of crowding front teeth.
If a wisdom tooth is not removed, a sack of fluid can form around the tooth, called a cyst. The cyst can destroy bone and damage other teeth and gums.
Damage to nearby molars:
An impacted wisdom tooth may push against the molar next to it. This can cause a cavity where the wisdom tooth hits the molar next to it. In most cases leads to removal of both molars.
An upper wisdom tooth can erupt sideways out of the gum. It can cause an ulcer from rubbing or biting into the side of the cheek.
Food becomes trapped between the wisdom tooth and the molar next to it. This can cause decay in both teeth.