Wisdom Teeth

Why do they call them wisdom teeth anyways? These late arriving third molars are dubbed “wisdom teeth” because they are thought to come during the transition from adolescence and adulthood. With age comes wisdom… right?

There will come a time where they’ve taken that big X-ray that goes all the way around your head (a panoramic x-ray) and there they are, those ominous wisdom teeth, laying sideways in your jaw bone. It will be at this point that you hear the phrase: “Well looks like its time we start thinking about getting those babies removed.”

Lets talk this through a little bit, and don’t worry, you are not alone. More and more people now a days are needing to consider having their wisdom teeth removed. Simply put, the majority of our jaws just are not growing as big as our ancestors did, making it very difficult to fit all of our 32 teeth properly. With not enough room, the teeth tend to come in at an angle or in some cases not at all.

Since dentistry is generally driven by prevention, we commonly recommend removing wisdom teeth that are impacted (stuck in the jaw bone at an angle that will not allow them to erupt), causing damage to healthy teeth and surrounding structures.

Often, we see wisdom teeth that are causing bite concerns, food/bacteria traps, cavities and damage to the roots or bone foundation to the tooth in front of it. Some people experience a lot of pain associated with problems from impacted and partially erupted wisdom teeth, but some experience no pain at all. This makes pain a poor indicator when deciding if treatment is needed or not.

Dentists start taking a close look at your wisdom teeth around the age of 18. At this age, the teeth are developed enough to determine their positions but the roots are only partially developed, making the procedure much easier.

There are many pain control options to help make the removal process as comfortable as possible. Once they are removed, give your self a couple days of rest to heal, since most people are back to their routine after that.

You will often be referred to a very competent oral surgeon to help you with your surgery. As this is something they do every day, their skills and special equipment will make the procedure quicker and less invasive.

However, not all wisdom teeth need to be removed! We can help you gain the WISDOM to make the best decisions and create treatment plans that are specific to you.

– Tiffany
​Braeside Dental Centre


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