Wisdom teeth are the very last teeth to emerge, usually during the late teens or early twenties. In some people, their eruption won’t cause any problems, but others aren’t quite so lucky, and there may be insufficient room for these teeth to erupt properly.
Often, when wisdom teeth try to come through, they become impacted where they are growing at the incorrect angle and are trapped underneath or against other teeth. Occasionally a wisdom tooth will not fully erupt, remaining partially covered with gum tissue. Partially erupted wisdom teeth are difficult to keep clean and can easily trap food and bacteria causing an infection called pericoronitis. When wisdom teeth cannot erupt properly, it increases the risk of a cyst developing around the tooth and which can destroy jawbone, tooth roots and other structures.
Sometimes a problematic wisdom tooth will cause pain, but other times there may be few, if any symptoms. Here at Apple Dental, we regularly monitor wisdom teeth yet to come through and if needed, will recommend their removal. Often, wisdom teeth are removed under local anaesthetic, but if their removal is likely to be more complicated, we can refer you to an oral surgeon.