Teeth are an important piece of our anatomy and serve numerous important functional roles. Most adults have a total of thirty-two teeth. This includes sixteen teeth each on the top and the bottom of the mouth. The teeth all have different functions and names because of the purposes that they serve.
The wisdom teeth serve a purpose just as the back teeth, canine, incisions, and molar teeth do. Many individuals experience overcrowding with their teeth and their mouth is not able to hold all thirty-two teeth. The average mouth can only hold twenty-eight teeth and having more than it can hold can be painful and cause crowding. The wisdom teeth are part of the thirty-two teeth that can fit in the mouth. They are part of the third molars and often take time to develop. Since they develop last, they may have a difficult time squeezing into the mouth and fitting properly.
The wisdom teeth should be examined and watched carefully to ensure that they do not damage the gum tissue. If they do not come out of the gum properly and align in a straight manner, they may need to be removed. They often are also removed because they damage the gum tissue and cause it to be unhealthy. In many cases the wisdom teeth will break through the gum in a sideways manner and can become trapped under the gum and bone of the mouth. This allows them to only partially break through. This is not what is desired. Teeth that are impacted can also be challenging and the teeth can contour to the bone as they find a path to break through and appear. These impacted teeth can be problematic and painful for numerous reasons.
Problems with Wisdom Teeth
When teeth are not aligned and positioned they can easily become infected. If bacteria begins to grow in the mouth, it could lead to an infection that is challenging to get rid of. Infections can make the individual experience pain, stiffness, swelling, and various forms of illness. Pressure can build when teeth erupt and can move other teeth over to locations where they are not supposed to be. This can change the alignment of the teeth and smile. When teeth are not aligned, it makes it easier for cysts to form near the impacted teeth. Tumors are also known to form which can greatly damage the health of the teeth and the jawbone. When impacted teeth are removed, such as the wisdom teeth, the remaining teeth in the mouth are safer and less likely to develop future problems. The earlier that they can be removed, the lower the surgical risk and easier it is.
How are they Detected?
Wisdom teeth can be observed through x-rays that are taken of the mouth. These x-rays are typically taken when an individual is a teenager. The x-ray allows for the position of the wisdom teeth to be observed as well as the likelihood of where they will go. Many times the location and shape of the wisdom teeth can help predict and prevent future problems. The examination can assist in catching problems quickly and allow for a quick and speedy recovery. The quicker they are noticed, the least amount of pain the individual may experience.
Wisdom teeth are removed under anesthesia to make the patient comfortable. Typically, local or general anesthesia is utilized, and the surgery can take approximately 45 minutes. The teeth will be pulled and removed, and the gum can then be sutured. Gauze may be used to prevent bleeding. Ice can prevent swelling and bruising from occurring. If the jaw is sore, heat can assist as well as exercising the jaw. Only soft foods should be eaten during recovery, and hard and sticky foods should be avoided. It is important that fluids are heavily consumed. The teeth should not be brushed until the second day after the surgery. The sutures should not be brushed and the blood clots should be avoided. Drinks should not be consumed through a straw because it can damage the blood clots. You should rinse with salt water, but not in a rough manner.
If you or someone you know has problems with wisdom teeth, Dr. Jamali and his team can help you. Contact Dr. Jamali today at 212-480-2777 to live in comfort and have a perfect smile.