Impacted teeth usually cause no symptoms at all. The condition usually remains untreated, especially if the teeth do not pose any real threat to the gums, or if the sufferer doesn’t have any pain. But in rare instances, impacted teeth need to be removed before any damage to the mouth can occur. So, when is it time to see your dentist?
To clarify, impacted teeth are teeth that are blocked from protruding through the gums. Blockages can occur for several reasons, most commonly because the jawline is full and the teeth that are being impacted are non-essential.
Most impactions are wisdom teeth, or incisors.
Wisdom teeth, also known as ‘third molars’, usually appear in patients around the ages of 17 to 21. According to Healthline, the mouth and jaw may be too small to accommodate them, because the jaw has most likely grown to its full size. If you have a small jaw, you’re more likely to have impacted wisdom teeth. However, there’s no real need for wisdom teeth anymore, so they’re typically removed if they’re a problem.
When symptoms from impacted teeth are prevalent, the most common complaint is pain.
Impacted teeth can also cause bad breath, bleeding and swollen gums, restricting the jaw from opening fully.
An X-ray of the mouth can determine if there are any impactions in the jaw.
How do you treat it?
Treatments are mostly symptomatic, and patients are administered antibiotics and pain medication. But in most cases, the dentist will remove the troublesome tooth or teeth.
Healthline continues that surgery is also a common option. “If you’re experiencing pain and other unpleasant side effects from an impacted tooth, your dentist may recommend extraction surgery, particularly in the case of impacted wisdom teeth. They may also recommend extraction if the impacted tooth will have a negative effect on other teeth.”