Learn About Possible Concerns With Wisdom Teeth

If your dentist has told you that your wisdom teeth should be removed, you may be skeptical. Many people feel they need their wisdom teeth for some purpose, or they wouldn't have them to begin with. Understanding wisdom teeth and concerns you may face regarding them can help you with your decision on whether or not to go through with the extraction.

What purpose do wisdom teeth serve?

Wisdom teeth don't serve a real purpose today. However, anthropologists do believe they helped our ancestors to eat the foods that made up much of their diet years ago. Some examples of these foods include tough meats, roots and leaves. Today, our food is processed in a manner where we are able to chew and digest them easier. Therefore, our wisdom teeth are not as important as they once were.

If you have a problem with your teeth having minor gaps between them, your wisdom teeth can help to push your teeth closer together as they come in. In this way, the wisdom teeth can help give you a straighter, tighter smile.

At what age do wisdom teeth generally come in?

Wisdom teeth are considered to be the third set of molars. They generally come in when a person is between 17 and 25 years of age. Many people find their wisdom teeth will start to make an appearance, then recede back in their gums for a while. It can take a few appearances for the teeth to finally stay out.  

What problems can wisdom teeth cause?

The wisdom teeth are set way back in the mouth, toward the end of the jaw. The problem with their location is many people's jaws aren't quite long enough to accommodate the teeth when they emerge. This can lead to impacted wisdom teeth where the teeth become trapped under the surface of the gums. The teeth can also grow in sideways and cause problems such as inflammation, crowding of molars, jaw alignment issues.

How can wisdom teeth extraction help?

If you have an impacted wisdom tooth, it will only continue to cause you problems as it puts pressure on your jaw and gum, which can also be very painful. A wisdom tooth that has come in sideways can cause you pain and cause damage to the surrounding teeth. Removing the wisdom teeth will correct these issues and prevent future problems from arising. Contact your local dentist for more information on wisdom teeth.