Wentworthville Dental

PH: 8677 1021
31 Dunmore Street Wentworthville NSW 2145 *Opposite THE MALL*

Gentle and affordable quality dental care - Dentist in Parramatta

Wisdom Teeth

Wisdom teeth (also called “third molars”) usually do not push through the gums until people are in their late teens, twenties or even older. Wisdom teeth are usually the last teeth to come through the gums.

Most people have four wisdom teeth. Some people do not have wisdom teeth. In many people, not enough space is at the rear of the jaws for wisdom teeth to come easily through the gums. If the jaw does not have enough space for the wisdom tooth to come through, the tooth will become wedged in or “impacted”. Some impacted wisdom teeth remain in place and cause no trouble. However, other impacted wisdom teeth may cause severe problems.

Often one or more wisdom teeth will cause problems and must be removed. If one (or more) of your wisdom teeth will cause problems, your dentist may recommend that it be removed. Removal of a wisdom tooth is a very common procedure. Removal of troublesome wisdom teeth should usually be done as soon as possible before the problems get worse.

If your wisdom teeth are likely to be very difficult or complicated to remove, your dentist may refer you to an oral and maxillofacial surgeon. Due to the shape and position of some wisdom teeth and the shape of the jaws, it may be preferable in some cases for an oral and maxillofacial surgeon to remove the teeth.

Problems caused by impacted wisdom teeth

INFECTION

When an impacted wisdom tooth starts to push through the gum, an infection can start around the top of the tooth. Infection and inflammation (swollen, red gums) can cause pain, swelling, and jaw stiffness. The infection can cause bad breath and an unpleasant taste.

Swallowing may be painful. The person may feel generally unwell.

CROWDING

A wisdom tooth may push nearby teeth out of their correct position.

PAIN

Pressure from the wisdom tooth may cause pain in the tooth next to it. Pain can also be caused by infection around the wisdom tooth.

ULCER

An upper wisdom tooth may push side ways out of the gum. It may cause an ulcer where it rubs against the inside of the cheek.

A FOOD TRAP & TOOTH DECAY

Food becomes trapped between the wisdom tooth and the molar next to it. This can cause cavities in both teeth. This is more common in chronic impactions where food impaction has been occurring for many months or years.

RESORPTION CAVITY

An impacted wisdom tooth may keep pushing against the molar next to it. This can cause a resorption cavity where the wisdom tooth hits the other molar. This often leads to serious damage to both teeth.

The molar may become infected or abscessed. Removal of both molars is often needed. Resorption cavities are uncommon.

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