Many dental patients experience the growth of their third molars, or wisdom teeth, between the ages of 17 and 21. These teeth can grow normally without affecting surrounding teeth for some patients, and other patients are born without wisdom teeth at all. Sometimes, these wisdom teeth cannot break through the surface of the gums and are trapped in the jaw. Dentists refer to this as wisdom teeth impaction. This situation requires surgical intervention with a tooth extraction from a dental professional. The dentist at McLeansville Family and Cosmetic Dentistry in McLeansville, NC outlines the risks to your oral health that can occur from impacted wisdom teeth.
If a wisdom tooth cannot break through the gum tissue, it can be stuck in the jawbone or behind your second molar. Some dentists agree that the pressure of your wisdom tooth still trying to grow underneath this molar can shift your surrounding teeth and cause crowding or misalignment. Other dentists attest that wisdom teeth do not affect the position of your other teeth. Still, pressure from impacted wisdom teeth on your molars can cause pain in both your teeth and jaw. Your dentist can use an X-ray to determine if extraction is necessary.
Risk of infection
Sometimes wisdom teeth can partially grow through the gums before becoming impacted. This creates space for bacteria to enter your gum tissue and cause an infection. This can be painful and lead to swelling or stiffness in your jaw. Your dentist may prescribe antibiotics to get rid of the infection. If the infection becomes an abscess, your dentist will need to drain the area. Your doctor will likely need to intervene with a surgical tooth extraction in these cases.
A cyst is a pocket of abnormal cells or fluid that forms in the gums where teeth attempt to grow. A cyst usually presents no symptoms or pain for the patient, but it can lead to oral health problems if left untreated. As it grows, the cyst can damage the jawbone or the roots of surrounding teeth. This may require extensive dental work, such as root canal therapy. Your dentist can usually find cysts with an X-ray.
Schedule a dentist appointment in McLeansville, NC
McLeansville Family and Cosmetic Dentistry provides tooth extraction and other general dentist services to patients in McLeansville, NC. Our practice also specializes in cosmetic and restorative dentistry for patients of all ages. To schedule an appointment with us, contact our office online or reach us by phone at 336.506.6545.