Wisdom teeth are the very last of your permanent teeth to come in, and they usually erupt in your late teens or early twenties. If you're lucky, they grow in straight and healthy. Sometimes, these valuable assets can encounter trauma that will cause them to break. A broken molar isn't something to ignore. You should seek immediate dental care before any further damage is done.
Infection and Decay
When it comes to a broken tooth, time is of the essence. A broken wisdom tooth left untreated can lead to many problems. Depending on the location of the break, it could leave a hole that makes the tooth more vulnerable to bacteria and decay.
If bacteria gets into the break, you could end up with an infected tooth. An untreated infection can spread to the surrounding gum tissue of other teeth and into your jawline. It could even spread to other parts of your body, leading to other health issues and diseases. Signs of an infection include swelling around the site of the broken tooth and nearby tissue, throbbing pain and sometimes causing a fever to occur.
If you break a wisdom tooth, call your dentist immediately. Make an appointment for the tooth to be examined, an x-ray may be taken and the dentist will determine treatment options. Don't wait until the pain is unbearable, or it may be too late to save the tooth.
If your tooth shows signs of an infection, you will be given antibiotics to clear it up before any work is done. Surgical removal of the broken tooth may be one of the treatment options the dentist may recommend.
A broken wisdom tooth will cause more harm than good if left untreated. Learn more about wisdom teeth in the Colgate Oral Care Resources Center.