Do Wisdom Teeth Really Need To Be Removed?


For many years it seemed like nearly everyone had their wisdom teeth removed as a teenager or young adult, but is it really needed?

In recent years, many researchers and public health officials have stated that removing healthy wisdom teeth is not required, however, there are circumstances when removing wisdom teeth is beneficial, and even necessary.


Wisdom teeth usually grow in between the ages of seventeen to twenty-five and should be evaluated early by a dentist. If they are causing symptoms, or your dentist has reason to believe they will cause future problems, it is best to extract them while still young. Recovery is usually faster as a teenager because the older you get the harder it is to recover. Waiting may also cause complications that could have been avoided if the wisdom teeth were removed while the patient was younger.

So then, what circumstances cause your dentist to recommend removing wisdom teeth?

Anytime wisdom teeth are creating problems or are likely to cause future problems and negatively impact the health of your mouth, your dentist will recommend extraction of wisdom teeth. At Jungle Roots Children’s Dentistry, we thoroughly evaluate your wisdom teeth and their impact on the health of your mouth before making a recommendation and will take as much time as is necessary to answer all of your questions and concerns.

Pain and infection sometimes requires wisdom tooth extraction. Infections are caused when a flap of gum tissue covers some of a partially grown in wisdom tooth and food or bacteria get trapped in between the tooth and gum. The gums become red, swollen and painful which are signs of infection. When gums are inflamed, the bacteria grow, and the tooth is harder to clean which leads to cavities.

Wisdom teeth that come in at the wrong angle, or crowd other teeth need to be extracted. If there is not enough room in your mouth, other teeth will shift and move to create room for the new teeth. Crowded teeth are more difficult to clean, and this can lead to increased risk of cavities and gum disease. Wisdom teeth that are in the wrong position can even damage your other teeth.

A wisdom tooth that cannot break through the jaw into the mouth is impacted. An impacted tooth can damage nearby teeth and cause crowding. A cyst can also form around the impacted tooth and cause damage to teeth, nerves and your jaw.


With all these reasons for extraction, when is it ever a good idea to keep your wisdom teeth?

Good news! If your wisdom teeth are healthy, completely erupted in the correct position, and bite properly with their opposing teeth, it is fine to leave them in. Just be sure to brush and floss them well to avoid infections and cavities, and you can enjoy using these extra teeth for the rest of your life.


At Jungle Roots Children’s Dentistry, we strive to provide the highest comprehensive children’s dental care in a unique, fun-filled environment staffed by a team of caring, energetic professionals. We believe the establishment of a “dental home” at an early age is the key to a lifetime of positive visits to the dentist. At Jungle Roots Children’s Dentistry, we are proud to turn your child’s dental visit into a jungle-themed adventure that is fun-filled. Dr. John Culp is a board-certified specialist in children’s dentistry. He is an expert in alleviating patient anxiety. He specializes in calming techniques that help ensure that patients remain relaxed during their visit. As a parent of three sons, Dr. Culp understands and has great compassion for children. At Jungle Roots Children’s Dentistry, we aim to turn every visit to our office into a fun-filled educational safari for all. Now with offices in Gilbert and Phoenix, you can conveniently find a Jungle Roots location near you! Call Today: (480) 759-1119


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