Impacted Wisdom Teeth
Wisdom teeth can become impacted when they are trapped under the gums or bone, causing considerable pain.
When trapped, wisdom teeth can easily decay and may even damage surrounding teeth. As such, impacted wisdom teeth require extraction.
How do I know if my wisdom teeth are impacted?
Impacted Wisdom Teeth Often Cause Pain & Other Unpleasant Symptoms
PainYou may experience severe pain in your teeth, gums, jaws, and even ears. This can occur due to pressure or infection.
Tenderness, Bleeding, & SwellingNoticeably tender or swollen gums are a common symptom of impacted wisdom teeth. You may also experience some bleeding due to gum irritation.
Bad Breath or an Unpleasant TasteAn infection caused by an impacted wisdom tooth can create a foul smell or taste in your mouth.
A Wisdom Tooth Can Become Impacted in Several Ways
Young Adults & Teens Face the Greatest Risk
Certain Factors Prevent Wisdom Teeth from Erupting
Lack of SpaceSince wisdom teeth are the last to grow in, many patients may not have enough room for wisdom teeth to grow in properly.
Abnormal DevelopmentThe eruption of teeth can be unpredictable. Some grow in at awkward angles. This can lead to them becoming trapped under the jaw or gums.
Many Patients Need to Have Their Wisdom Teeth Removed
Your Doctor Can Examine Your Bite to Identify an Impacted Wisdom Tooth
Most of the time, an impacted wisdom tooth is easy to diagnose during a routine dental exam. During the exam, your doctor can perform a visual evaluation of your bite and review digital x-rays to determine where and how the tooth has become impacted. For more complex impaction, the doctor can also use 3-D imaging technology for a clear view of all the tissues involved.