Getting wisdom teeth is a rite of passage for nearly everyone, but sometimes wisdom teeth cause problems by not coming in correctly or pushing on other teeth. Knowing at what age you can expect wisdom teeth can help you prepare for them.
This allows you to recognise the symptoms of wisdom teeth eruption and get treatment if required before they cause problems. Read on to find out more about what age wisdom teeth come in, its symptoms and how you can deal with it.
What Are Wisdom Teeth?
Wisdom teeth are the last 4 molars of your mouth. They are located behind the very last molar on both the top and bottom jaw. While they don’t actually make you wiser, they get their name because they come in a little bit later in life.
At What Age Do Wisdom Teeth Come?
For most people, wisdom teeth come in during the middle to late teenage years. In other cases, these teeth won’t come in until a person is in their early 20s. It can be different for everyone, but it’s generally in this age range. It’s very unusual for someone to get their wisdom teeth earlier, and most people have them by their middle 20s unless there’s a problem with them coming in.
Common Symptoms of Wisdom Tooth Eruption
Getting an x-ray from us at Dana Street Dental is one of the best ways to see where your wisdom teeth are and if they’re close to coming in. Other ways to tell include jaw pain, some swelling of your gums behind your molars, bad breath, tender gums, and difficulty opening your mouth all the way. You could also have a bad taste in your mouth.
Common Problems Related to Wisdom Teeth
While some people get their wisdom teeth without incident and only experience mild pain and discomfort, wisdom teeth cause problems for others. Understanding what these problems could be can help you spot them and get in to see us at Dana Street Dental if needed. If you have serious issues with your wisdom teeth, you may need to have them removed.
Swelling of the surrounding gums
If there isn’t enough room for a wisdom tooth to erupt into the mouth, or if the tooth is erupted at an angle – the surrounding gum cannot be cleaned easily leading to inflammation of the gums. Bacteria in the area could also lead to infection of the surrounding tissue. If you are experiencing pain or facial swelling towards the back of your mouth – you need to visit one of our dentists as soon as possible. Warm salt mouth rinse and possibly a course of antibiotics is needed to settle the swelling prior to removal of the wisdom tooth. The condition could even be life threatening if the swelling is large and starting to impinge your airway.
Causing Damage to Other Teeth
When a wisdom tooth erupts on the wrong angle, it can apply significant pressure to the adjacent tooth. This can lead to decay and/or cracking of the next door tooth. If left untreated the adjacent tooth may also need removal.
A sinus infection seems like a strange thing to happen from a tooth, but the wisdom teeth in your upper jaw have deep roots that reach up near your sinus cavities. For example, if you have a wisdom tooth that becomes infected, that infection could make its way into your sinus cavity. Experiencing frequent sinus infections could be related to your wisdom teeth.
Cavities can happen in any of your teeth, but wisdom teeth are particularly prone to cavities because they’re so far toward the back of the mouth. That makes them harder to clean and can result in plaque buildup. Sometimes a wisdom tooth will come in crooked and only make its way partway into position, making it hard to clean and vulnerable to decay.
What Should You Do When Wisdom Teeth Come In?
You don’t need to do anything special when wisdom teeth come in straight (like the other molars in the mouth). If you have discomfort from them, you can take an over-the-counter pain reliever or talk to your dentist about any additional medications. You may also want to gargle with warm salt water to reduce pain and keep the area clean and sanitary.
On the other hand, if the wisdom teeth aren’t erupting straight and causing you pain, you need to visit a dentist as soon as possible. Most likely these teeth need to be removed to prevent further damage to the surrounding teeth and supporting tissue. If there is significant swelling in the area, you will need a course of antibiotics prior to the teeth removal.
Get the Information You Need From Dana Street Dental Today
If you have questions about your wisdom teeth, are experiencing a problem with them, or want to know if they’re close to coming in, contact us today at Dana Street Dental. We’re here to help you get answers and any needed treatment to have a healthy, pain-free mouth.