If your wisdom teeth are currently growing in, or you’re an adult who never had them removed, you may be wondering whether getting your wisdom teeth removed is actually necessary. The answer is that, while most people will need to get their wisdom teeth removed at some point, it’s not always a requirement. Here’s some more information about wisdom teeth to help you make the right decision, straight from the knowledgeable team at American Dental:
What Are Wisdom Teeth?
Your third set of molars are often referred to as your wisdom teeth because they don’t start to grow in until later in life. For most people, wisdom teeth begin to grow in somewhere between the ages of 17 and 25.
When the wisdom teeth start to erupt, it can cause a host of problems. They can cause crowding if there is not enough room in the mouth for them to fully erupt. This can push the other teeth out of position, creating issues with crowding and a misaligned bite. In some cases, they will not grow in straight. When that happens, they will often push against neighboring teeth or their roots, causing damage that can result in tooth loss. The spaces between the teeth can also become enlarged, allowing bacteria to enter the area underneath the gums. Wisdom teeth can even become impacted, meaning they either don’t erupt at all or don’t fully erupt. Over time, this can cause abscesses and severe infections under the gums that can be painful or even life-threatening.
Do You Need to Get Your Wisdom Teeth Removed?
Although wisdom teeth frequently cause issues when they start to grow in, that’s not the case for everyone. If your wisdom teeth are not impacted and they grow in straight without any crowding issues, it is not necessary to get them removed.
If, on the other hand, they are causing any of the problems listed above, you will definitely need to get them removed. In most cases, the sooner you get them removed, the better. Be sure to visit your dentist as soon as possible after you notice them coming in so you can find out more about any potential issues they may be causing. Your dentist will advise you about any problems and the best course of action going forward.
Of course, if you never got your wisdom teeth removed, it’s never too late. While the procedure and recovery will generally be easier the younger you are, plenty of adults have successfully undergone wisdom teeth removal with no problems. If you live in the Chicago area, American Dental has 8 different locations where you can schedule an appointment with an experienced dentist to discuss your wisdom teeth and any issues you may be having.
Call us at (773) 284-1645 if you need a dentist in Lincoln Square or anywhere else in Chicagoland. You can also visit our contact page to schedule an appointment online, and be sure to schedule a follow-up visit if you experience TMJ after dental work or any other problems.