They say that with age comes wisdom. Your wisdom tooth, which is the last to emerge during your early 20s or late teens, hence the term “wisdom tooth.”
The wisdom tooth belongs to the molar group known as the third molar, which is found in the back of the mouth. When the wisdom tooth emerges, some people do not have problems at all. But for some, it results in oral issues, such as swelling around the tooth, bleeding, pain, infection and possibly contributing to teeth crowding.
An impacted wisdom tooth refers to the wisdom tooth that fails to break through the gums at all or only partially through. This tooth problem may obstruct the normal development of your other teeth. It may even lead to infection, as well as pain and discomfort. The worse things that may result out of this include dental problems, such as cysts and bone damage.
When confronted with an abnormal wisdom tooth, the best course of action is to visit a dental office and consult a dentist. Be wary of the following signs:
- Jaw pain
The common sign of a wisdom tooth is having pain in the back of your jaw, where the emerging tooth appears to press against the neighbouring back molar. It happens when there is a lack of space in your jaw needed to give way to the tooth development. Also, a partially erupted tooth may create food trapping which allows bacterial infiltration between teeth leading to tooth decay. This is often pain free for a while but if the decay spreads, the pulp (nerve) may become involved which could lead to a root canal treatment. This can be extremely painful.
- Swollen and bleeding gums
In line with the aforementioned, the inflammation brought by the impacted tooth can cause swelling and bleeding gums. You’ll notice redness in your gums and experience pain from time to time. When you brush or floss your teeth you may see bleeding. If left unattended, the infection may impact the other molars and lead to serious oral problems.
- Difficulty in opening mouth
An impacted wisdom tooth significantly impacts how you open your mouth, with difficulty brought by the teeth misalignment and affected jawline. This happens when the tooth tries to have space in your jaw, moving the neighbouring teeth and jawline. As a result, you may experience excruciating pain and stiffness in the jaw area, to the point that you may find it hard to open your mouth. Often, the wisdom tooth can be the first point of contact especially when the gum is swollen.
- Bad breath
A partially erupted tooth, as mentioned above, creates a breeding hub for bacteria, causing infections or decay. As a result, this infection or decay leaves a bad taste in your mouth. If left unattended, it can even lead to bad breath or halitosis.Final words
Having an impacted wisdom tooth can lead to dental problems, so it is essential to be aware when you have one and do the necessary steps. As outlined above, watch out for signs, such as jaw pain, swollen gums, difficulty, bad breath, and difficulty in opening your mouth.
When you have one or some of these conditions, consult your dentist right away. He or she will be able to assess your condition with a proper diagnostic and oral examination and provide you with the appropriate dental solution.
If you’re looking for a local dentist in Fulham, London, to help you with your impacted wisdom tooth, get in touch with Progressive Dentistry today.