Typically a wisdom tooth is extracted to correct an actual problem or to prevent problems that may occur in the future. Some of the problems that can happen when wisdom teeth are present include:
Your jaw may not be large enough for them, and they may become impacted and unable to break through your gums.
Your wisdom teeth may break partway through your gums, causing a flap of gum tissue to grow over them. Food and bacteria can get trapped under the flap and cause your gums to become red, swollen, and painful. These are signs of a localized infection.
More serious problems can develop from impacted teeth, such as infections spreading throughout the jaw, decay/damage to other teeth and bone, or a cyst
One or more of your wisdom teeth may come in at an awkward angle, with the top of the tooth facing forward, backward, or to either side.
Benefits of Wisdom Teeth Removal
Wisdom tooth removal usually is effective in preventing:
- Crowding of the back teeth.
- A wisdom tooth becoming stuck in the jaw (impacted) and never breaking through the gums.
- Red, swollen, and painful gums caused by a flap of skin around a wisdom tooth that has only partially come in.
- Gum disease and tooth decay in the wisdom tooth, which may be harder to clean than other teeth, or in the teeth and jaw in the adjacent to the the wisdom tooth.
After a wisdom tooth is removed, you may experience:
- Pain and swelling in your gums and tooth socket where the tooth was removed.
- Bleeding that won't stop for about 24 hours
- Difficulty with or pain from opening your jaw
- Slow-healing gums
- Damage to existing dental work, such as crowns or bridges, or to roots of a nearby tooth.
- A painful inflammation called dry socket, which happens if the protective blood clot is lost too soon
- Numbness in your mouth and lips after the local anesthetic wears off, due to injury or inflammation of nerves in the jaw