Impacted teeth are a disruptive dental problem that must be addressed right away.
Even when you trust your dentist or oral surgeon to remedy the problem, you may have a few questions about impacted teeth.
1. How Does it Happen in the First Place?
Teeth become impacted when there isn’t enough space for them to fully emerge from the jawbone. This may be because the gap where the tooth should go isn’t large enough. It could also happen because the tooth that’s emerging is twisted or crooked.
2. Which Teeth Are Involved?
While it’s possible for any tooth to become impacted, the wisdom teeth are the most commonly affected impacted teeth. As the third molars, they are often left without space in the jawbone. The upper canines (or eye teeth) are the second-most affected by this problem.
3. What Signs Should I Look For?
A stuck, impacted tooth should cause symptoms, right? Not always! In many cases, patients don’t even realize they have impacted teeth until they have a dental X-ray.
If it’s only a mild case, symptoms may only include redness and swelling of the affected gumline. If it’s a little more serious, it could be painful to open and close your mouth, and an abscess could form. You may feel pain throughout your head and neck. Impacted teeth may not bother you at all, or they could disrupt your life.
4. What Should I Do?
If you notice a steadily growing jaw ache, pain when you bite or chew, bad breath or an unpleasant taste in your mouth, it’s time to address the problem. Talk to your dentist or oral surgeon about how you’re feeling so they can schedule the right tests to issue an accurate diagnosis.
5. How Is it Treated?
If the impacted teeth are your third molars, they are most often removed. They do not serve any necessary function, and by taking them out, your symptoms will go away and plenty of other dental problems will be avoided as well.
For other teeth, such as canines, treatment must be carefully planned and executed. It’s important to guide the proper development of these teeth, as you need them for chewing and to maintain your appearance.
How Can We Help?
At Northeast Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, we take impacted teeth seriously. We work with your dentist or orthodontist to treat problems before they become overly painful or do damage to your mouth. Call today to set up an appointment with our staff.