Toothy Wisdom – Let Us Help You Make Smart Choices
Nearly all of us develop wisdom teeth and wish we didn’t. We have them on each side of our mouth, upper and lower. Strictly speaking, they are our third set of molars. In fact, they are visitors from a previous life that have outlived their welcome and their usefulness. Our forebearers’ jaws were large enough to accommodate 32 teeth, including their third molars. But today, most of us have the capacity for only 28 teeth. Something has to give!
Wisdom teeth begin to form at around age nine, completely maturing by 18-21 years. By your late teens, your jawbone has nearly reached its adult size, but usually isn’t big enough to hold these extra teeth. As a result, your third molars can become trapped in the bone (impacted). The tooth’s crown may only partially break through the gum, or it may remain in the bone with misshapen or misplaced roots growing dangerously close to one of your sinus cavities.
Believe it or not, “wisdom” teeth don’t boost your IQ. They earned that name because they usually begin to appear between the ages of 17 and 25, when you are said to be wiser than you were in your childhood years. These four large adult teeth are located at the back corners of your mouth. As a dentist in Battle Creek, we will often recommend extracting these teeth because they can do more harm than good.
If left in, impacted wisdom teeth can lead to…
- gum disease
- tooth decay
- a cyst around the wisdom tooth
- damage to another tooth or surrounding bone.
Some people lack one wisdom tooth – or more! They are the lucky ones and not the majority!
It’s difficult for us to predict when, or if, your third molars will give you problems, so we recommend regular x-rays to give us a good indication of how your wisdom teeth are acting over time. Impacted or infected wisdom teeth can cause severe damage. Removal at a younger age before complications develop means easier extractions and a much faster recovery time. Talk to us. We will develop a plan to help you make smart choices about your wisdom teeth.
Did you know…
- 90% of people have at least one wisdom tooth that will cause undesirable symptoms.
- 85% of wisdom teeth will need to be removed at some point.
- 51% of wisdom teeth won’t show symptoms with gum disease or dental caries present.
Is It Time To Talk To Us About Wisdom Teeth Removal?
During a consultation, we will assess your smile and ask various questions about your oral health and medical history. It’s also an opportunity for you to ask us any questions you may have – we will answer them honestly. As your dentist in Battle Creek, we want to prevent any complications from arising and ensure that your recovery time is as short as it can be.
So, get in touch with us today. You don’t need to bear the pain any longer!
Yours in excellent dental health,
Dr. David Long, Battle Creek Family Dentistry