Fix Impacted Teeth

If a tooth is impacted, it simply means that it has not erupted through the gums. A lot of people have impacted wisdom teeth because there is not enough space for the teeth to fully come in. The wisdom teeth are a third set of molars at the very back of the mouth that are the last to develop and often do not push through the gums until around the age of 16. It is also not uncommon for an adult tooth to remain impacted if there is not enough room for it to come in when a person is losing their baby teeth.

Identifying an Impacted Tooth

It is not uncommon for a person to have an impacted tooth and not even realize it but an impacted tooth can actually cause issues with the rest of your teeth. It is possible for an impacted tooth to develop decay which can spread to neighboring teeth or cause an infection and abscess. They also often push on neighboring teeth since there isn’t enough room for them above the gumline. This is especially true with wisdom teeth that naturally come in perpendicular to the other teeth.

If an impacted tooth becomes infected, the patient may experience pain and tenderness in the area along with swollen gum tissue, bad breath, or jaw pain and headaches.

What Causes an Impacted Tooth

Teeth mainly remain impacted because there is not enough room in the patient’s mouth for all of the teeth to fully develop and erupt through the gum tissue. A tooth can be fully impacted, meaning it is still within the jawbone, or partially impacted in which case the tooth has slightly erupted through the gum tissue. Wisdom teeth and the upper canines are usually the teeth that have a bit of trouble when developing.

The upper canines follow the premolars and incisors in development and sometimes there is not enough room for the canines! Wisdom teeth have the same problem. They are last to develop and do so horizontally. For wisdom teeth to erupt, they have to have room to straighten and push through but most people do not have space. Having wisdom teeth removed whether or not they have erupted can save a lot of pain and money down the road.

How are impacted teeth treated?

Wisdom teeth are typically treated by extraction. This third set of molars are not necessary and can develop decay and cause a lot of issues with other healthy teeth. They are also often removed prior to orthodontic treatment. This ensures that there is enough room for the teeth to shift into a straight, beautiful smile!

During your routine cleaning and check up, your dentist will be able to identify any impacted teeth with dental x-rays. If you do have an impacted tooth, your dentist can discuss treatment options with you to determine what is best for your overall health.

More on Fixing Teeth : Fix Stained Teeth