Why Are Most Wisdom Teeth Pulled?
By the time your first four (and most likely, only) wisdom teeth arrive, not enough room in the jaw exists to accommodate them. This lack of space can result in wisdom teeth:
- Unable to move into position since other teeth are in the way
- Aligning horizontally in the jaw or otherwise misplaced, preventing them from emerging from the jawbone
If wisdom teeth can't erupt into the mouth, they could be impacted, which leads to symptoms such as:
- Stiffness or pain in the jaw
- Swelling, inflammation, and infection of gum tissue
- Painful or sensitive gums caused by partially erupted teeth
If you have an impacted wisdom tooth, you know the right thing to do: See your dentist as soon as possible. You'll usually get a referral to an oral surgeon to remove the impacted tooth. Other reasons for removal include that your wisdom teeth are:
- Irritating parts of your mouth
- Causing other teeth to move out of position
- Likely to cause problems once they erupt based on X-rays showing abnormal third-molar positioning
Once an oral surgeon removes your wisdom teeth, expect the recovery time to last 2-10 days, depending on the degree of difficulty of the surgery and the amount of swelling and pain you experience afterward. And if your dental professional discovers extra wisdom teeth, your oral surgeon can remove them, as well.
So, while your permanent teeth can't grow back if extracted – or if you lose them via trauma – there's a rare chance you might have an extra set of teeth lying in wait. While that might have been a good thing for our early ancestors, it can pose a problem in the 21st century. By getting dental X-rays to alert you to the possibility of extra wisdom teeth and problem wisdom teeth, you'll be in the best position to benefit your oral and overall health. Be aware that extractions of four – or more – wisdom teeth require trust in an oral surgeon and a sufficient recovery time. It's very wise of you to learn all you can.