Your 4 wisdom teeth usually erupt between the ages of 17 to 25. Your dentist will keep an eye on your wisdom teeth at your regular check-ups, but be aware of symptoms that may indicate wisdom teeth problems. These symptoms include:
- Red, tender, swollen, or bleeding gums
- Bad breath or an unpleasant taste in your mouth
- Jaw pain or swelling
- Difficulty opening your mouth
Problems from Impacted Wisdom Teeth
Since the jaw normally isn’t large enough to hold wisdom teeth, they cannot erupt and develop fully into the mouth. They become impacted, where the teeth are fully or partially between the jaw and gums. Impacted wisdom teeth create several problems such as:
- Tooth Damage: Wisdom teeth usually don’t grow straight because they have no space to do so. They can press against the neighboring tooth, damaging it or pushing it against other teeth which causes crowding.
- Tooth Decay: Wisdom teeth that are partially impacted are not only very difficult to clean, but create a food trap. The bacteria and plaque that build there can create cavities in the impacted tooth.
- Gum Disease: Pericoronitis is a type of gum disease that is common to impacted wisdom teeth problems. Plaque that collects between the wisdom tooth and the gum flap can infect the gums, jaw, cheeks, and neck.
More serious issues can also arise from impacted wisdom teeth such as the development of a cyst or tumor in your jawbone. Speak to your dentist about whether you need your wisdom teeth removed yet.