The removal of wisdom teeth has become so common that it seems like a right of passage. In fact, they are called “wisdom” teeth because they begin erupting as we enter adulthood. Wisdom teeth, also referred to as third molars, are one of those odd twists in human evolution where an obsolete body part continues…
Impacted Wisdom Teeth and Damage to Other Teeth
Adults can have impacted wisdom teeth. These third molars are unsuccessful in breaking through the gum tissue. That is why these teeth stay inside the gum tissue and jawbone. This is called impaction. Impacted wisdom teeth damage neighboring teeth. If you want to find out how this happens, here are the details.
Pressing against neighboring teeth
Some impacted wisdom teeth tilt toward the second molars. Others lie in a horizontal position as if lying down. When this happens, the teeth are in the jawbone perpendicular to the second molar. As the perpendicular wisdom tooth grows, it presses against the second molar. The pressure damages the second molar’s roots. Excessive pressure makes the second molar shift.
This pushing and shifting have a domino effect on the other teeth. The pressure might be too excessive. This damages the pulp and tooth roots of the neighboring teeth. The damage may need a root canal procedure or even a dental extraction. The patient will need orthodontic treatment to realign the shifted teeth.
Makes the neighboring teeth vulnerable to infection
Impacted wisdom teeth tend to develop cysts. These growths collect fluid. Food particles stuck within the folds of the impacted third molar encourage bacteria to collect inside the cyst. The infection starts. It then penetrates the gums and bones. Infection also spreads to the other teeth.
Reaching the back part of the mouth to clean the impacted wisdom teeth is often difficult to do. It is also challenging to floss between the second molar and the gum tissue of the third molar. Once plaque and tartar accumulate behind the second molar, the neighboring teeth become prone to infection. Periodontitis starts in the neighboring teeth.
Risk of cyst formation increases
A dental cyst is a fluid-filled sac that develops around impacted wisdom teeth. If the dentist does not treat it, the cyst will continue to grow. It will then weaken and damage the jawbone. It can also spread to the roots of the neighboring teeth. The dentist will have to remove the cysts and the wisdom teeth in one procedure.
Risk of pericoronitis increases
Impacted wisdom teeth increase the risk of developing pericoronitis. This infection occurs when the impacted tooth has a small portion of the crown peaking through the gums. It can also happen if the wisdom teeth are underneath the gum’s surface. Pericoronitis causes swelling and inflammation in the gum tissue near the area of wisdom teeth impaction.
There is difficulty closing the mouth or biting down because of the swollen gums. Bacteria thrive near the area of inflammation. This results in the gathering of pus. That is why those with pericoronitis have an unpleasant taste in the mouth.
Impacted wisdom teeth can bring damage to neighboring teeth
Dental issues start to arise when you have impacted wisdom teeth. These issues spread to the neighboring tissue and teeth, including the jawbone. If the infection becomes worse, the dentist will have to extract the impacted wisdom teeth. An appointment with your dentist can start your road back to a healthy mouth.
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