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Unless you have had specific treatment on your wisdom teeth, the chances are they are something that you have heard about more than you have ever thought about them. You might know that they can be painful, and that they sometimes require treatment that can be long-term and unpleasant. You may even know how they came to be called “wisdom teeth”, as useful or otherwise as that information will be.
But how much do you know about wisdom teeth themselves, and your own in particular?
Everyone has wisdom teeth, but for some of us, they never push through
Your wisdom teeth are set back in your mouth and start up in the gums as a third set of molars. They are supposed to “erupt” in early adulthood: this process is usually slow and often painful, but for some people it simply never happens. Different reasons are given for this anomaly, with some suggesting it is inherited from one’s parents. Some posit that wisdom teeth that fail to descend may be blocked by other teeth which crowd them out. If you get through early adulthood without them putting in an appearance, you’re not out of the woods for sure; they can make themselves known at any time.
Why are wisdom teeth painful?
Because wisdom teeth are latecomers to the party, they have to squeeze in if they’re going to fit in at all, and this doesn’t happen without a bit of discomfort. They will push against the existing teeth in the area and place a strain on the jaw, and the first inkling that it’s your wisdom teeth may come when you book an Anoka Dental appointment complaining of toothache. Sometimes the teeth stay up in the gum, impacted and not pushing any further. It is in these cases that they will usually be removed.
What other issues can they cause?
Because they are trying to grow alongside teeth that have been in place for years or even decades, wisdom teeth do not “erupt” without some discomfort, but if you feel a pain in your gum that won’t go away, don’t assume it’s just a standard thing. In trying to force their way through, wisdom teeth can cause an infection which will lead to an abscess. That doesn’t sound like something to smile about, but it feels even less like it. This may necessitate the removal of existing teeth to cure, and you’re liable to be on antibiotics for a while too.
If they’re extracted, will they grow back?
Although most of the teeth in your mouth are, in the present case, the second version of that tooth you’ve grown, there is not a second wisdom tooth waiting up there for the first one to be removed. This is probably very good news, as teeth erupting are usually the cause of those childhood toothaches we all hated so much. It’s not any less painful as an adult but, thankfully, the first wisdom tooth to push through in an area is also very much the last one. You can have four grow through in total, but again this very much varies between people.
Wisdom teeth are an important part of your dental health. Unfortunately, they can also be a big pain in the mouth! Be sure to check with your dentist about any questions or concerns regarding your wisdom teeth or other oral issues.
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