Wisdom teeth are usually extracted for two reasons which entail either already impacted teeth or teeth that could potentially become hazardous if not extracted. Potential complications of properly grown-in wisdom teeth include infections which are caused by food particles that become trapped in the jaw are behind the wisdom teeth. With this scenario brushing and flossing will be difficult to do and will be inadequate. Infections will begin to be more frequent and will increase in pain which can result in major medical complications and danger. Wisdom teeth also need to be removed when misalignment occurs which causes the teeth to rub against the tongue and cheek causing frequent infection and irritation. Malocclusion occurs causing crowding in the mouth and complications with remaining teeth.
On occasion wisdom teeth will fail to erupt completely through the gum bed or the gum in the back of the mouth creates a soft tissue flap that extends to the biting surface of the wisdom tooth called an operculum. When an operculum is present it is difficult to keep the area clean and free from infection. Bacteria can easily and rapidly accumulate under the operculum which will cause pericoronitis, a common infection seen predominantly in young adults with partial impactions. Partial impactions often become more severe by the occlusion with opposing third and second molars. Symptoms are seen with swelling, redness of the gum around the eruptions site, bad odor, and pain in the general area and possible to the neck. Leaving pericoronitis untreated can progress to a more severe infection which would result in extraction of the wisdom tooth. Schedule a visit to our 7 Day Dental Laguna Woods office to take care of all your dental needs.