Wisdom teeth removal is one of the most interesting discussions in the dental industry today, and is being reconsidered by dental clinics. Should wisdom teeth be kept or should they be removed for patients?
What are wisdom teeth? Wisdom teeth are the third molars and they are the very last teeth to come in or the very last teeth to develop fully in your mouth. Typically, we see them coming in around the ages of 16 to 18, but it depends on each individual person.
Issues from Wisdom Teeth
Most of the time dental clinics will suggest that wisdom teeth be removed. This is because wisdom teeth do not serve an important function in the mouth so there is not a reason to keep them. Another reason why wisdom teeth are commonly removed is because they can cause issues with the way your teeth fit into your mouth. When they come in, they sometimes push the other teeth around inside of the mouth creating a poor teeth alignment, or they may be difficult to brush or floss because of an odd alignment leading to tooth decay and gum disease.
Wisdom Teeth Studies
The New York Times and USA Today conducted studies asking patients about their experiences with their own wisdom teeth. The results were telling: 60-70% of patients with wisdom teeth had trouble at some point in their life with only 10% having four healthy wisdom teeth.
The other side has shown that as many as 30% of people do not have all of their wisdom teeth come in because of our modern diets. They have also found that one out of three wisdom teeth are considered to be disease-free. So it is not always necessary to remove the wisdom teeth, and definitely depends on your individual preferences and your individual mouth.
Today Dental Clinics Evaluate Wisdom Teeth Removal
Whether you keep your wisdom teeth or not, it is important to consult your dentist. Dental clinics can give you a good recommendation based on x-rays and other findings as well as refer you to a good dental surgeon if you need to have your wisdom teeth removed. With wisdom teeth, it is always better to be prepared and remove early than wait for the teeth to come in (because the root will then be fully formed and that can be painful!) so consult with your dentist today.