What about my wisdom teeth?
If you have not had your wisdom teeth checked by your dentist, you might have already heard stories about someone having troubles with their wisdom teeth or had a not-so-good experience with wisdom teeth removal. So, you may be wondering, ‘What about me wisdom teeth?’.
What are wisdom teeth?
Wisdom teeth, or third molars, are the last teeth to erupt. Most people have four wisdom teeth. However, they are the most commonly missing teeth. They usually erupt in the late teen years or early twenties. By the time the wisdom teeth erupt, there is usually insufficient space to accommodate them comfortably. Therefore, often times, the wisdom teeth become impacted, or stuck.
Do I need to remove my wisdom teeth?
Wisdom teeth that are healthy and properly positioned can be left in place. However, if your wisdom teeth are impacted, difficult to clean or growing in the wrong direction, you may consider having them removed. Removal of wisdom teeth is preferably performed before the age of 25, as the risks of surgery increase slightly after this age.
If your wisdom teeth are completely covered by bone and are healthy, chances of the wisdom teeth undergoing pathological changes is rather low. The National Institute of Clinical Excellence (NICE) in 2000 and the Scottish Intercollegiate Guidelines Network (SIGN) in 1999 established well-defined criteria for removal of problematic wisdom teeth and concluded that, given the surgical risks involved, removal of asymptomatic wisdom teeth is not indicated.
If your wisdom teeth are partially covered by gums or bone, they may impose a risk of infection. In such circumstances, you may discuss with your dentist or oral surgeon about the risk and benefits of removing your wisdom teeth.
Contact Specialists In Orthodontics for a FREE orthodontic consult with our registered specialist orthodontist today.