Should You Have Wisdom Teeth Removed if They Aren’t Hurting?

Wisdom teeth got their name because they tend to show up later in life than your other teeth — they come in when you’re older and hopefully “wiser” than you were as a child. However, while the third molars at the back of your mouth have a cool name, having them isn’t necessarily a good thing. Many times, a skilled dentist will recommend that a patient have their wisdom teeth removed even if they’re not causing any pain. Why is this so?

 

Wisdom Teeth Can Cause Problems Later On

Even if your wisdom teeth aren’t causing you any problems at the moment, they may do so later. These teeth can become impacted, which means they don’t fully erupt. They get trapped in your jaw and gum. When they’re stuck there, they can cause pain and increase the chances of infection. It’s also possible that they’ll crowd your other teeth, causing them to become misaligned.

Wisdom teeth don’t always cause problems. In fact, they can act as normal, functional pearly whites in some people. However, if your dentist believes that they may lead to issues later on, they’ll probably recommend prompt removal. It’s usually best to remove wisdom teeth when a person is between 18 and 24 years old. After this window, the bones may become harder, making the extraction surgery more difficult.

 

Sometimes It’s Better to Leave Them In

Wisdom teeth extraction is a common surgery, and most of the time it goes off without a hitch. However, as is the case with any surgery, complications are possible. Certain medical conditions may put you at a greater risk for infections and other issues. Plus, you may be in pain for a week or longer after you have the procedure.

You and your dentist should discuss all the pros and cons of leaving your wisdom teeth in. Ultimately, the best choice will depend on your individual situation.

 

Keep an Eye on Your Wisdom Teeth

If your wisdom teeth aren’t currently causing you any problems and you decide to leave them in, be sure you schedule regular visits to your dentist. Your dental care professional will examine your mouth every time you go in for a cleaning and check for any issues that might be developing with your third molars. If they notice that something is amiss, you can schedule a surgery and have it done before you face any serious problems.

When and if you do have surgery, your dentist will make sure you’re comfortable during the procedure. You might have to take a few days off work or school to recover, but you should be up and active soon after the teeth have been removed.

Is it wise to have your wisdom teeth removed if they aren’t bothering you? Talk to your dentist to learn more about the advantages and disadvantages of each option.

 

About the Dentist

Dr. Melody Zamora at Zam Dental is committed to providing personal, compassionate care to patients in the San Antonio area. If you have concerns about your wisdom teeth or anything else related to oral health, contact us at 210-494-2206.

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