I have partially impacted wisdom teeth. They honestly don’t bother me, but my dentist keeps nagging me about having them removed. If they’re not bothering me, why should I remove them? My dentist before college never worried about them.
When it comes to whether or not to extract your wisdom teeth, there are a lot of factors involved. Here are just a few considerations:
- The type of impaction
- The age of the patient
- The likelihood of a problem in the future
The safest age to remove wisdom teeth is in the late teens to early twenties. That has to do with the pliability of the teeth and the lack of thickness at the end of the root. As you age, the teeth aren’t as pliable and there is an increased chance of complications.
If you were in your 40s with fully impacted wisdom teeth, I’d say the risks outweigh the benefits. However, you said you have partially impacted teeth. Look at the image above. You can see this tooth is partially impacted, meaning there is part of the tooth that broke through and another part still under the gums.
This becomes a prime source of bacteria getting trapped. It’s just a matter of time before this blows up into an infection and you’re forced to remove it.
It’s much safer to plan your wisdom tooth removal than it is to have an emergency choose for you. I’m guessing your dentist feels the same way and that’s why he’s encouraging you to get this removed.
Why Didn’t Your Last Dentist Mention This?
There are a couple of reasons your previous dentist didn’t mention this. You said it was your dentist before college, so I’m assuming you’re rather young still. It could have been that they hadn’t erupted yet and your old dentist thought there was a possibility, based on the x-rays that they’d fully erupt.
If he thought they come in fine, there’d be no reason for him to suggest you’d need them removed.
However, a second option is negligence. If your wisdom teeth were partially impacted at the time you were under his care and he didn’t mention extraction, I’d say he was doing you a huge disservice.
At some point, these will cause an infection. Best to take care of it early.
This blog is brought to you by Auburn Dentist Dr. Raymond Bolt.