Tag Archives: wisdom teeth

4 Reasons To Consider Having Your Wisdom Teeth Removed

Unless you’re one of the lucky ones born without them, most people get their wisdom teeth between the ages of 17 and 21. Your wisdom teeth grow in behind your molars on both the top and bottom of your mouth and can cause significant problems in your mouth long-term. So much so that most people eventually opt to have them removed. It’s a routine procedure – more than five million people have their wisdom teeth pulled every year! 

Not sure if it’s the right choice for you? Here are four reasons you should consider getting them removed.

Pain. Growing teeth can be very painful, but your wisdom teeth can be extra tricky because you are older and they are so far back in your mouth. Additionally, when they erupt through your gums, it can create an entryway for bacteria, leading to gum and jaw pain.

Jaw Damage. Sometimes, your wisdom teeth can’t find a place to come in, so they become impacted or remain below the gums. When this happens, the tooth can become infected, and in more severe cases, a cyst can form. This can damage the roots of other teeth and your jaw.

Space. For many people, by the time their wisdom teeth grow in, they’ve already spent years and thousands of dollars on braces to correct and straighten their teeth. For most, when your wisdom teeth grow in, you don’t have any more room in your mouth, and their arrival can cause overcrowding. These new teeth may push their way in, forcing your other teeth to move out of the way. This can all be avoided by just removing them.

Cavities. Your wisdom teeth are already tough to clean because they are so far back in your mouth. But when they grow in, they can cause your gums to swell. This can create pockets between your teeth which are even harder to clean. Not to mention if the wisdom teeth grow in at an improper angle, they may be impossible to clean.  As a result of all of this, you can experience accelerated tooth decay that leads to cavities. 

Many dentists recommend you remove your wisdom teeth before they have a chance to grow in and cause problems. The likelihood you’ll have to have them removed eventually is high, and having the surgery is easier at a younger age when your roots and bones aren’t fully formed. Recovery from the surgery is usually quicker for younger patients.

It is important to talk with your dentist about your child’s wisdom teeth in their late teens. Most of the time, a dentist can see the teeth on an x-ray before they erupt and can be dealt with before they have the chance to cause problems. If you have any questions about your wisdom teeth, make an appointment with us to get them checked out!

Dental Health Tips for Parents of Teens

By the time your child is a teenager, they’ve lost all their baby teeth and hopefully have gotten over any fear of the dentist. But that doesn’t mean that you don’t need to be concerned about your teen’s dental health. Your teenager’s mouth is changing as rapidly as the rest of their body is at this age, and teens have their own set of dental health concerns. Take a look at some important dental health tips for parents of teenagers.

Keep an Eye Out for Wisdom Teeth

Wisdom teeth are the last of the teeth to emerge, and they come much later than other types of teeth, usually somewhere in the mid-to-late teen years. Your teen may experience pain and discomfort when these teeth break through the gums.

For a long time, it was common practice to remove the wisdom teeth as soon as they emerge, and some dentists still routinely recommend it, while others take a wait-and-see approach. Wisdom teeth may become impacted, unable to fully break through the gums, or they may be positioned in such a way that your teen can’t reach them to brush and floss them thoroughly. This can lead to decay and infections if the teeth are not removed. It’s important to be on the lookout for wisdom teeth, so your teen’s dentist can determine if they need to be extracted.

Encourage a Healthy Diet

By the time they become teenagers, kids have much more control over their own diets than they did when they were small. This can result in some teens overindulging in junk food, sweets, and sugary sodas or energy drinks. These treats are OK in moderation, but if your teen overdoes it, a poor diet can take a toll on their teeth.

Talk to your teen about the importance of maintaining a diet that’s good for their body and for their oral health. Stock the fridge and pantry with tooth-friendly snacks and drinks. Remind them that their teeth need to last a lifetime, and to do that, they need a healthy diet full of nutrients.

Think Twice About Oral Piercings

It’s normal for teens to experiment with their looks, and some experimentation is harmless. However, oral piercings, such as tongue bars and lip rings, may not be so benign.

The mouth is full of bacteria, and it’s not uncommon for mouth piercings to become infected. Teens can also crack a tooth by biting down on a tongue bar or other oral piercing. Encourage your teen to discuss the risks of oral piercings with their dentist before making any decisions.

As a parent, it’s your job to ensure that your teen makes good dental health decisions during this crucial period in their development. This can protect them from painful and expensive dental problems in the future.