Close this search box.

When to Remove Wisdom Teeth: Signs and Indications for Extraction

Wisdom teeth are those dreaded molars that usually become a problem later in life, typically in the late teens to early twenties. They can bring with them pain, swelling, discomfort and sometimes even infections. It often becomes necessary to remove them to alleviate pain and maintain oral health. When and why is wisdom teeth extraction needed, and what are the signs? Learn more with Blue Gum Dental Clinic.

Why do Wisdom Teeth Need to be Removed?

Wisdom teeth are the final set of molars that emerge in the back corners of the mouth during late adolescence or early adulthood. Most people have four wisdom teeth, one in each corner (upper left, upper right, lower left, and lower right). However, some may have fewer or even no wisdom teeth at all.

Since wisdom teeth erupt when most of the teeth are fully developed, they can get stuck between the gums or grow at the wrong angle due to the lack of space. This is called an impacted wisdom tooth and can lead to various oral health complications. However, not everyone may have an impacted wisdom tooth. For some people, they may grow out straight without causing any trouble, and for others, they may never erupt. But extraction is often the only long-term solution once a wisdom tooth is impacted. 

Here’s why your dentist may recommend removing impacted wisdom teeth:

  • An impacted wisdom tooth cannot fully emerge through the gums because of limited space by neighbouring teeth. This can cause pain, swelling, infection, and damage to nearby teeth and bones.
  • Impacted wisdom teeth can create pockets of bacteria and food debris around the gum line, increasing the risk of infection and gum disease. This can cause pain, swelling, redness, and even the formation of abscesses.
  • Wisdom teeth that grow at an angle or exert pressure on the adjacent teeth can cause damage, such as decay, fractures, and enamel erosion.
  • The eruption of wisdom teeth can lead to overcrowding, which can cause misalignment or shifting of neighbouring teeth, resulting in bite problems and difficulty cleaning between the teeth.
  • In rare cases, wisdom teeth may develop cysts or tumours, which can cause damage to surrounding teeth, bone, and soft tissues if left untreated.
  • If you wear braces or aligners, wisdom teeth may affect your orthodontic treatment, hindering the success of the alignment process.

If not removed, an impacted wisdom tooth will continue to cause pain, especially if they are under the gum line. Debris and bacteria can penetrate the gums, leading to infection and inflammation. It’s essential to consult your dentist at the first sign of pain in your back molars. 

Signs You May Need Wisdom Teeth Removal

If you have one or some of the following symptoms, it may be an indication of an impacted wisdom tooth:

  • Persistent pain or discomfort in the back of the mouth. 
  • Swelling, redness, or tenderness around the gums in the back of the mouth.
  • Difficulty chewing, opening the mouth fully,  experiencing stiffness or limited jaw movement. 
  • Recurrent gum infections, swelling, or tenderness in the area of the wisdom teeth.
  • Decay, fractures, or damage to surrounding teeth caused by pressure or misalignment from wisdom teeth. 
  • Pressure, pain, or congestion in the sinuses, particularly in the upper jaw, may occur when impacted wisdom teeth push against the sinus cavity.

Regular dental checkups can help dentists detect if a wisdom tooth is about to emerge. It allows them to monitor the signs of impaction, recommend extraction if required, and take preventive measures to stop infections. Timely removal of wisdom teeth, especially if you are in your teens or twenties, also helps with quicker healing and recovery. 

What’s Involved in a Wisdom Teeth Extraction Procedure?

A wisdom tooth extraction begins with a consultation to examine the impaction, take X-rays and evaluate the condition of your teeth. This also helps your dentist assess the position of the wisdom tooth and identify complications. For some patients, the wisdom tooth can be removed intact; for others, if the tooth is buried too deeply, it may have to be divided into sections for easier removal. 

The procedure will begin with the administration of local anaesthesia to ensure your comfort. An incision will be made to access the tooth, and it will be extracted with special instruments. The area will be cleaned; stitches will be used to close the wound if required. After the procedure, your dentist will provide instructions on post-recovery, prescribing pain medications if needed. Follow-up appointments are necessary to monitor healing and ensure a smooth recovery. 

Get a Healthy and Pain-Free Smile with Wisdom Tooth Removal

The thought of a tooth extraction can cause anxiety and fear in most people. However, it’s important to understand that leaving in an impacted wisdom tooth or a severely decayed tooth can harm your oral health. It increases the risk of tooth decay, gum disease and infections, causing severe pain and complications that make it difficult to remove at a later stage.

At Blue Gum Dental Clinic, your dental and overall health comes first. We aim to provide long-term solutions that help protect your teeth and gums, ensuring your smile is healthy and radiant. With gentle dentists there for your support at every stage of your wisdom teeth removal and quality dental care, we ensure a smooth, comfortable procedure and speedy recovery. If you have been ignoring a toothache or suspect something is amiss in your mouth, contact us for an accurate diagnosis and tailored treatments.

Blue Gum Dental Clinic

Please complete the form below

One of the Blue Gum Dental team will be in touch shortly.