Why You Should Have Your Wisdom Teeth Removed

A group of diverse teenagers smiling together

Did you know that since wisdom teeth usually come in during the teen years, they’re named for their arrival with a young person’s newly discovered wisdom and approaching adulthood? Wisdom teeth are your third set of molars, appearing behind the first two sets and the other 20 teeth that your mouth was designed to hold. That’s 28 teeth already in place which makes it difficult for an additional four wisdom teeth to grow in properly.

And that’s the short answer for why wisdom teeth need to be removed: no room. But let us explain in more detail. When teeth try to push through the gums but cannot, they remain impacted which means they are fully or partially covered by gum or bone, and this has the potential to lead to oral health problems. Keep in mind, 90% of us have at least one impacted tooth.

Impacted teeth can cause:

  • Inflamed, irritated, and bleeding gums
  • Jaw pain and swelling
  • Bad breath
  • Damage to adjacent teeth
  • Loss of bone and gum deterioration

You may be thinking that your wisdom teeth seem fine. We get it. This is a common assumption. What’s important to understand is the potential they have in creating complications in the future. Not everyone has wisdom teeth, but most of us do, and we need them removed for the following reasons.

Overcrowding and Misalignment

When wisdom teeth start to push through, there’s little room left in your mouth, so as they erupt, they push adjacent teeth aside. This is why so many orthodontists recommend having your wisdom teeth removed as soon as you get your braces off. Wisdom teeth have the capacity to undo all those years of orthodontic treatment as they squeeze their way in and overcrowd your straightened smile.

Damaged Teeth

While overcrowding may be reason enough to remove these bothersome third molars, the truth is they can do more than wreck a straightened smile. As they grow in and rub against neighboring teeth, they can spread tooth decay to the adjacent second molars.

Gum Disease

Your gums can get caught in the crossfire when wisdom teeth battle their way in. With limited room, the teeth can’t fully erupt, which may cause your gums to become inflamed, an issue that is hard to reverse. As a partially impacted tooth pulls away from the gums, space is created, inviting bacteria and infection to set up camp, leading to gum disease.

Jaw Health Complications

The jaw is also susceptible to serious complications when wisdom teeth only partially erupt. However, once wisdom teeth are extracted, the chance of tumors and cysts forming in the jaw is unlikely. Remember that growths can result in pain and TMJ problems. Better safe than sorry.

Poor Dental Hygiene

For those who choose to keep their four wisdom teeth because they seem to be comfortable and complication-free, chances are, they’ll still be unusually snug. This makes adequate brushing, flossing, and cleaning near impossible. Putting off the common and routine surgery required for wisdom teeth removal isn’t worth the risk of poor dental hygiene down the road.

Having your wisdom teeth removed ensures fewer future problems, many that can intensify with age. There is so much potential for things to go poorly when wisdom teeth are left alone. Don’t risk it. Put your worries to rest and schedule a consult with one of our expert Oral Surgeons to evaluate the status of your wisdom teeth and address any concerns you have. Your peace of mind is worth it.  Call Warren Oral Surgery today at 908-222-7922 for more information.  We thank you for your time and greatly look forward to seeing you in our office.

To read more about wisdom teeth view our informative pages below.