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Why Undergo Wisdom Tooth Extraction?

Dr. Degel Dec 22, 2015

An illustration of an impacted wisdom tooth Although some people may never experience problems with their third molars, commonly known as wisdom teeth, most people will require extraction. Because the growth of the wisdom teeth can lead to dental problems, wisdom tooth extraction is often necessary. Learn why the wisdom teeth may require extraction in this overview from our Queens, NY dentists, Drs. Clifford Degel and Carmen Every-Degel.

Why Do Wisdom Teeth Need to Be Removed?

The wisdom teeth generally develop in the late teen years to early adulthood. Although they may not cause pain, the wisdom teeth can lead to a variety of dental issues, which can be prevented or treated with wisdom tooth extraction. Some of the most common reasons the wisdom teeth may need to be removed include:

  • The wisdom teeth are impacted: When the wisdom teeth are impacted, they can’t break through the jaw and gum tissue. Impacted wisdom teeth can cause pain, inflammation, or infection. They can also damage neighboring teeth.
  • Overcrowding: The growth of the third molars can lead to overcrowding. The wisdom teeth can put pressure on the existing teeth, resulting in alignment issues.
  • The wisdom teeth are growing in at an angle: The wisdom teeth may grow in at a forward, backward, or sideways angle. This can put pressure on the surrounding teeth, also causing alignment issues.
  • Tooth decay and gum disease: The wisdom teeth can be difficult to brush and floss, making them and the surrounding teeth vulnerable to tooth decay and gum disease.

Signs the Wisdom Teeth Should Be Removed

The wisdom teeth may be removed before a problem occurs. If not, patients may experience some signs that indicate the wisdom teeth should be removed, including:

  • Alignment issues: When the wisdom teeth cause alignment issues, wisdom tooth extraction is generally needed to prevent further crowding of the teeth.
  • Damage to the surrounding teeth: As the wisdom teeth put pressure on the surrounding teeth, dental damage may occur. Although it is preferable to remove the wisdom teeth before damage occurs, any sign of damage as a result of wisdom tooth growth indicates a need for extraction.
  • Tooth decay: Tooth decay is another signal that the wisdom teeth should be removed. Removing the hard to reach (and clean) wisdom teeth can reduce the risk of tooth decay in the back teeth.
  • Gum disease: The wisdom teeth are particularly prone to gum disease. When gum disease is present, removing the wisdom teeth can help reduce this risk.
  • Sinus pain: Some people may experience sinus pain or pressure as a result of the wisdom teeth. Sinus pain or pressure is another indicator that the wisdom teeth should be removed.
  • Tooth or jaw pain: Pain around the surrounding teeth or jaw area may be a sign that a wisdom tooth is impacted or growing in at an angle.

Is Wisdom Tooth Extraction Right for You?

There are many benefits to wisdom tooth extraction. Wisdom tooth extraction can help improve oral health and prevent major dental problems, helping patients maintain a healthy smile.  Schedule a consultation with Drs. Degel and Every-Degel to find out if wisdom tooth extraction is right for you.

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