When there is limited space for wisdom teeth to erupt they may obtain partial eruption. When a wisdom tooth is only partially erupted the surrounding gums are difficult to keep clean. Infection and inflammation are common even when there are no apparent symptoms. Once inflammation takes hold, it becomes very difficult to eliminate and may spread to other teeth, or result in periodontal disease. Gum disease and inflammation associated with wisdom teeth may led to receding gum tissues, deterioration of the jawbone, and tooth loss.
When space is even further limited, the wisdom teeth may remain impacted (surrounded by bone). The most serious risk of an impacted wisdom tooth is the development of an associated cyst and/or tumor. Removal of such lesions can require extensive surgical procedures to repair and restore jaw function and appearance.
Even wisdom teeth that fully erupt and seem to be problem-free (asymptomatic) can remain a breeding ground for oral infection and inflammation. Research supports the concept that such inflammation may enter the bloodstream and contribute to the development of a variety of diseases, including diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and stroke. Research also suggests that oral inflammation associated with wisdom teeth may contribute to pre-term or low birth weight infants. When wisdom teeth erupt through the gum tissues, they rarely provide any meaningful function and are always difficult to keep clean.
Once it has been determined that a wisdom tooth will not successfully erupt into your mouth and be maintained in a healthy state, early removal of wisdom teeth is associated with faster and easier recovery. With age, the chance for complications related to the removal of wisdom teeth increases. At Hutto Premier Dentistry, Dr. McEntire and Dr. Marek can assist in evaluating wisdom tooth concerns. We routinely provide removal of wisdom teeth with conscious sedation to allow for ultimate comfort.