Impacted wisdom teeth in teenagers

Impacted wisdom teeth in teenagers

Posted by G. LARRY LEONAKIS on Jan 16 2021, 09:50 AM

Out of the 32 teeth we have, the wisdom teeth, or the third molars, are the last set of teeth to erupt. They are found at the back of the dental ridges and hardly play a significant role in chewing food due to their posterior position. Although the third molars emerge like any other regular tooth, they may lead to a certain complication in some instances. This condition is called impacted wisdom teeth - a painful oral concern that can have several risks.

What causes impaction of the wisdom teeth?

The exact cause of impacted wisdom teeth varies from person to person. In most cases, it is associated with jawbone shape and size. When the teeth are too big for the sockets, they tend to get stuck when they erupt. In some instances, they would be inclined at a rather awkward angle, making them come in contact with the roots of the adjoining teeth or the jawbone itself. Since the wisdom teeth usually emerge when the individual is in their late teens, they would stand a higher chance of sustaining impaction.

How inconvenient are impacted teeth?

  • Impacted molars can lead to severe pain and discomfort, especially when the individual chews food, brushes their teeth, or even with the jaw's regular movement.
  • When the food residues and microbes deposit near the gum line of the impacted tooth, it can lead to the formation of an abscess. If left untreated, a severe infection could follow.
  • Leaving the tooth as-is for a long time can result in jawbone deterioration. Even the surrounding gums could sustain a severe infection, leading to gum disease.

How are impacted teeth treated?

The dentist will thoroughly screen the mouth to determine the severity of the impaction. We will also take x-rays to get a better view of the underlying jawbone and tooth roots to check if they have sustained damage. If possible, we will try to treat the condition using medication and surgery. But, if the tooth is beyond any form of treatment, we will have to extract it.

Extracting an impacted wisdom tooth can be done much like any other tooth. We will administer local anesthesia near the tooth to numb it and the surrounding tissues before commencing the extraction. In case the tooth is impacted in a very awkward position, we may have to section the tooth and remove it in smaller fragments. The dentist will suggest suitable aftercare instruction to facilitate optimum healing.

Please do reach out to us on call or by scheduling an online consultation with our dental professionals, and we’ll be glad to assist you further.

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