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Dentist Park Cities TX

Wisdom Teeth

Dentist Park Cities

WHAT ARE WISDOM TEETH?

“Wisdom teeth” is the term that we use to refer to someone’s 3rd molars — usually the furthest-back teeth in the mouth on the top and bottom jaws.

WHY DO I NEED MY WISDOM TEETH OUT?

The primary reason that many people need their wisdom teeth taken out is because there is no room in their mouth for the wisdom teeth to grow in. Sometimes a wisdom tooth can stay buried under the gum and in the bone, and never needs to be addressed. However, other wisdom teeth can be in a position that is very close to the tooth in front of it (the second molar); and when a 3rd molar is too close to the 2nd molar, it can lead to problems with the 2nd molar, including cavities and gum problems.

WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO HAVE AN IMPACTED WISDOM TOOTH?

An impacted wisdom tooth is a third molar that has failed to emerge fully into its expected position in the mouth, or has not emerged at all. This can happen because there is not enough space for the tooth to grow in properly or because it is growing at an angle. Impacted wisdom teeth can cause a range of dental problems, including pain, infection, swelling, damage to neighboring teeth, and even the development of cysts or tumors in the jawbone. In such cases, removal of the impacted tooth is usually recommended to prevent further complications.

CAN YOU DO A FILLING IN A WISDOM TOOTH?

Yes. We can sometimes do fillings in erupted wisdom teeth, but sometimes it doesn’t make sense to do so. For example, if a patient is missing their upper left wisdom tooth, it doesn’t make sense to fill the lower left wisdom tooth because the tooth is opposite an empty space! In this situation it makes sense to remove the unopposed wisdom tooth if it starts to get decay. But, for a patient that still has all of their wisdom teeth erupted in their mouth and in function (that is, the wisdom teeth are erupted like the rest of the teeth), we can certainly do fillings if there is decay and we can access the tooth.

DO YOU PERFORM CROWNS AND ROOT CANALS IN WISDOM TEETH?

Performing crowns and root canals on wisdom teeth is rare due to the difficulty in accessing them. Additionally, the complex anatomy of wisdom teeth makes it challenging to perform a successful root canal, making this procedure even less common.