What’s this chat about wisdom teeth?

Quite often we hear people chatting about their “wisdom teeth,” but what are they exactly and how do they differ from our other teeth? Wisdom teeth are your third molars, the last teeth to erupt.

We see these teeth push through at a more mature age than we saw our other teeth come in, which is why they are historically called “wisdom” teeth. You know what they say, “with age comes wisdom!” Usually, these third molars erupt between ages 17-21 on each side of the upper and lower jaws.

Sometimes these molars come in great with no complications, other times not so much. When your third molars come in correctly, they are beneficial in the assistance of chewing and perform as the rest of your teeth do. Some wisdom teeth don’t have enough room to erupt, causing them to come in at an incorrect position/angle. On the other hand, they could be impacted, meaning they are trapped under your gums. You may need your wisdom teeth extracted if they came through incorrectly, are impacted, causing pain, or damaging neighbor teeth. You should also consider having them surgically removed if they are too far back to maintain good oral hygiene, as they may start to buildup decay.

This specific extraction is very common and is traditionally performed by an Oral Surgeon. There are a variety of sedation and anesthetic options, to make your surgery as comfortable as possible.

What’s your role?

Your job? Brush your teeth thoroughly, being sure to reach far back enough to scrub your wisdom teeth, floss regularly, and visit your dentist twice a year. Unfortunately, we don’t have any influence on how they push through our gums. Should you feel discomfort with your wisdom teeth, be sure to consult with your dentist.

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