If a wisdom tooth isn’t giving you problems, does it need to be removed? Dr. Caracioni hears this question a lot from patients who have wisdom teeth that are not causing them pain or discomfort. But is there a risk associated with this preemptive removal?
If They’re Not Bothering Me …
You do not have to have your wisdom teeth out if they’re not bothering you – and they are not impacting other teeth. Many people do not have room for these additional teeth, which causes them to push other teeth out of the way when they erupt. This causes shifting and crowding and can lead to pain, problems with your bite and even more serious conditions like temporomandibular joint disorder, or TMJD.
Why Remove Them?
Even if it seems like your wisdom teeth aren’t causing problems, we still recommend removing them, because they could bother you and cause dental problems later. Also, it’s important to remember that even if one or more of your wisdom teeth has erupted normally or without issue, that doesn’t mean all of them will.
We also recommend removal because the wisdom teeth are hard to clean. They are set back very far in the mouth, making it difficult to reach with a toothbrush and floss. This leads to tooth decay and further complications. Many dentists will not place a filling in a wisdom tooth, and you do not want to develop a painful infection.
There is not an increased risk of complications when removing wisdom teeth as a preemptive measure. Risk of complications increases if a patient does not follow after-care instructions. Patients should take caution after their removal and avoid smoking, using a straw and eating sugary foods. Patients should also practice good oral hygiene during recovery and rinse their mouths thoroughly after eating to remove food debris.
If you have questions about whether wisdom teeth removal is right for you right now, give Dr. Caracioni a call for a consultation at 785-783-0741.