Impacted wisdom tooth

What is Impacted wisdom tooth?

Impacted wisdom teeth (or impacted third molars) are wisdom teeth which do not fully erupt into the mouth because of blockage from other teeth. If the wisdom teeth do not have an open connection to the mouth, pain can develop with the onset of inflammation or infection or damage to the adjacent teeth.

Wisdom teeth likely become impacted because of a mismatch between the size of the teeth and the size of the jaw. Impacted wisdom teeth are classified by their direction of impaction, their depth compared to the biting surface of adjacent teeth and the amount of the tooth's crown that extends through gum tissue or bone. Impacted wisdom teeth can also be classified by the presence or absence of symptoms and disease. Screening for the presence of wisdom teeth often begins in late adolescence when a partially developed tooth may become impacted. Screening commonly includes clinical examination as well as x-rays such as panoramic radiographs.

Infection resulting from impacted wisdom teeth can be initially treated with antibiotics, local debridement or soft tissue surgery of the gum tissue overlying the tooth. Over time, most of these treatments tend to fail and patients develop recurrent symptoms. The most common treatment is wisdom tooth removal. The risks of wisdom tooth removal are roughly proportional to the difficulty of the extraction. Sometimes, when there is a high risk to the inferior alveolar nerve, only the crown of the tooth will be removed (intentionally leaving the roots) in a procedure called a coronectomy. The long-term risk of coronectomy is that chronic infection can persist from the tooth remnants. The prognosis for the second molar is good following the wisdom teeth removal with the likelihood of bone loss after surgery increased when the extractions are completed in people who are 25 years of age or older. A treatment controversy exists about the need for and timing of the removal of disease-free impacted wisdom teeth that are not causing problems. Supporters of early removal cite the increasing risks for extraction over time and the costs of monitoring the wisdom teeth that are not removed. Supporters for retaining wisdom teeth cite the risk and cost of unnecessary surgery.

This condition affects up to 72% of the population. Wisdom teeth have been described in the ancient texts of Plato and Hippocrates, the works of Darwin and in the earliest manuals of operative dentistry. It was the meeting of sterile technique, radiology and anaesthesia in the late 19th and early 20th centuries that allowed the more routine management of impacted wisdom teeth.

Questions and answers on "Impacted wisdom tooth"

I suffer from pain in jaws while opening mouth wide. Jaws sometimes get stuck while opening & closing them. Clicking sound is there sometimes while...

doctor1 MD

Brief Answer:
Removal of impacted tooth, TMJ disorder.

Detailed Answer:
Hello XXXXXXX ,

Thanks for conaulting Healthcare magic.

This is Dr....

Read Full Thread   Ask a Doctor Now

I'm a 46 year old female and I went to the dentist last week with toothache - it turned out that I had an abcess due to a pocket in my gum on my...

doctor1 MD

Brief Answer:
Not necessarily cancer, might be a cyst..

Detailed Answer:
Hi..
Welcome to HEALTHCARE MAGIC..

I have gone through your query and can...

Read Full Thread   Ask a Doctor Now

I have hemi facial spasms and an impacted wisdom tooth same side could they be connected?...

doctor1 MD

Brief Answer:
It is possible

Detailed Answer:
Good evening. The short answer is YES....it is possible that in your case the presence of an impacted wisdom tooth...

Read Full Thread   Ask a Doctor Now

Recent questions on  Impacted wisdom tooth

doctor1 MD

Hi.. doctor mentioned that im getting an wisdom tooth n there is no space for that and i have to undergo a surgery for its removal. Can you please...

doctor1 MD

Hi Doctor I have pain due to wisdom teeth coming up on one side of my jaw. It has become difficult to eat food. Could you please advice some...

doctor1 MD

I have some pain on my left side of neck when I move my jaw. Feels like a sore throat and ear ache , but it's not

Ask Question
Doctor Image
MD

Hi, I am Dr. Andrew Rynne (Family Physician). I will be guiding you through the process. Please write your question below.