No one knows for sure why wisdom teeth exist. After all, all they seem to do is cause pain and discomfort, so why do we need them? Researchers and many dentists seem to think they were helpful for chewing roots, vegetables, and raw meat. Now, however, our food is softer than it used to be, and the only thing we do with them now is extract them.
But, how do you know when you need to extract your wisdom teeth? Do you reach a certain age, or do you get them out when they start to cause problems? Here are many of the ways to tell it could be time to see your dentist about wisdom tooth extraction.
They are Painful
If you are experiencing pain in your mouth around your wisdom teeth region, then it’s time to see a dentist. They may be irritating surrounding teeth, infected, or they may be completely okay. Your dentist won’t be able to tell you until they get a closer look. Don’t delay your appointment, as any pain can end up twice as bad if you put it off.
You Have Problems Eating
Given that these teeth are supposedly for chewing roots, raw meat, and vegetables, you wouldn’t expect them to cause difficulties. However, they do. If food is getting stuck between the top of your teeth and your gums, and you can’t clean it out properly, then you may like to consider asking your dentist about wisdom teeth removal.
They Aren’t Growing Correctly
Not everyone’s mouth is designed to handle wisdom teeth. These large teeth can take up a significant amount of space in your mouth, and there are no procedures to fix that. You can’t use braces on wisdom teeth, nor can you make more room where there isn’t any. If your teeth are overcrowded and squished, wisdom teeth extraction could be the only option.
Your Teeth Are Not Straight
If wisdom teeth don’t grow in straight, they can cause chaos with your other teeth. They can damage them, move them around, and create significant shifts in your mouth. Problems can also arise if wisdom teeth grow in sideways – which can sometimes happen. Regular dentist checks can show up potential problems before damage sets in.
Gum Inflammation and Cavities
Cleaning wisdom teeth can be hard work, with pockets of gum hiding bacteria which can lead to infection and cavities. If you are having trouble cleaning your wisdom teeth, or your gum surrounding them is inflamed, see your dentist. It might be time for extraction to take care of the problem permanently.
Not everyone will need to remove their wisdom teeth, but it’s a standard procedure. Irritation, cavities, damage, and other problems can arise as your wisdom teeth grow. If you think yours are wreaking havoc, see your dentist without delay.