Wisdom teeth can grow and erupt normally in your mouth without causing any pain, discomfort, or soreness. Problems arise only when there isn’t enough space in your jaw, or the tooth becomes stuck in the wrong position.
This is a common issue and is often why when wisdom teeth grow and erupt, they tend to cause pain and problems.
It might also be the case that you do not need to remove your wisdom teeth. Sometimes the pain is just normal when the growth or eruption occurs, but other times, it could be a sign of a bigger problem.
Therefore, it is important that you visit your dentist if you suffer from any pain or discomfort, and they will examine you and advise you about your specific situation.
What are wisdom teeth and why do they cause issues?
Wisdom teeth are the third set of molars and final set of teeth to form. They are situated right at the back of your mouth and most commonly people have four wisdom teeth – two on the bottom and two on the top.
They typically tend to emerge at the age of 18 years and normally by no later the age of 30.
Your wisdom teeth are designed to help your chew rough, hard foods such as meat and nuts. Our diets have changed a lot over the past years, and we already have two sets of molars, eight teeth in total, working on chewing tough foods. So, it isn’t crucial for you to keep your wisdom teeth if they are causing issues.
Wisdom teeth can be troublesome at times. It is estimated around 85% of people have their wisdom teeth pulled or extracted.
Nowadays, your jaw often won’t have room for 32 teeth (including four wisdom teeth). Wisdom teeth with no room for them to grow and emerge into often push against other teeth and become impacted, which causes pain and discomfort.
Impacted wisdom teeth
An impacted wisdom tooth is a tooth that cannot fully erupt to the surface and has only partially emerged or remains hidden in the gums. These types of wisdom teeth are most likely to start affecting the surrounding teeth in your mouth and will cause issues like pain and discomfort.
A tooth that is pushing through at the wrong angle will directly impact the adjacent teeth, pushing them out of place and causing overcrowding, which overtime affects your entire jawline.
It can cause your second molar, the tooth that is right next to the wisdom tooth, to become susceptible to decay or infection as the wisdom teeth push against it.. At this stage, it is vital to seek dental advice as it may not just be one tooth that is in trouble. Due to decay, in such circumstances, you may have to have both teeth removed – not just the oddly-placed original wisdom tooth.
In some instances, an impacted wisdom tooth will not cause any pain or discomfort, but it is still necessary to consult a dentist and they will tell you whether there is cause for it to be extracted.
If impacted wisdom teeth are left in the jawbone, they will not break out from the sac they develop in. Later, the sac could fill with fluid which can form a cyst, or the cells could mutate which can cause damage to the jaw, nerves, and teeth. In rare occasions, a tumour, usually benign, can develop in this area. So don’t be alarmed if your dentist inquires about your wisdom teeth; they are only doing this to perform a routine thorough check on your oral health.
What is wisdom teeth pain?
Wisdom teeth can cause a variety of symptoms and soreness, such as:
- Swollen gums and/or sore jaw
- Sinus pain
- Trouble eating
Can I self-treat wisdom tooth pain?
Sometimes wisdom tooth pain and discomfort are inevitable for most people, though the level of pain could vary depending on your specific case. If you experience any pain due to your new wisdom teeth emerging, it is important that you consult a dentist for examination.
There are a few at-home remedies that you can make use of while your new teeth start to settle into place. They are also recommended if you are waiting for your dentist appointment to have your wisdom teeth pulled out by your dentist.
1. Over-the-counter pain relief
2. Saltwater rinse
3. Apply a cold compressor icepack
Wisdom teeth removal procedure
On your initial consultation with the dentist, they will complete a thorough examination of your teeth and take x-rays to determine if your wisdom tooth (or teeth) needs to be extracted. Often, they will need a full mouth x-ray, called an OPG, to look at your wisdom teeth and surrounding teeth properly.
Learn more about the full wisdom tooth removal procedure and the different options available for you click on the link below.Wisdom teeth removal procedures – Learn more
Aftercare for wisdom teeth removal
Following your treatment procedure or surgery, the dentist will give you a brief on how the procedure went and if any follow up appointments are necessary. When you are back home after the wisdom tooth extraction, there are some things you need to keep in mind when monitoring your healing.
After procedure pain and surgery complications
Feeling some pain and discomfort after your extraction is normal. In most cases, over-the-counter medication like Ibuprofen and paracetamol is recommended and more than enough to ease your pain.
Swelling in the affected area is also common following the extraction and can last for two to three days. Applying an icepack to the cheek will help with reducing the swelling and soreness.
If you have been given a gauze by your dentist, you should place it where the tooth was and bite down firmly to control any bleeding. Sitting upright and applying an icepack will also help.
To learn more on how long wisdom teeth removal takes to heal, click on the link below.
Wisdom teeth complications and early intervention
If problematic wisdom teeth are left untreated, long-term effects can be severe and could cause:
- Chronic pain
- Widespread tooth decay
- Damage to the surrounding teeth
- Recurring infections
- Cysts or tumours
- Gum disease
Extracting wisdom teeth isn’t always a clear decision. You should ideally speak to your dentist and seek advice in order to determine the best course of treatment for your specific case. For more details on wisdom tooth pain, symptoms and treatment, read the following article.For the Full Article – Click here
Watch Dr. Alistair talk about wisdom teeth in the video below.
If you’re experiencing any pain or discomfort in your jaw or teeth, get in touch with the friendly team at Dental on Beams or book an appointment online.