When it comes to dental health, wisdom teeth can often be a source of discomfort and concern. These third molars typically emerge during late adolescence or early adulthood, and for some people, they can become impacted. 

Wisdom tooth impaction is when the teeth do not fully emerge through the gums, often due to insufficient space in the jaw. This can lead to numerous oral health problems and may require the intervention of an oral and maxillofacial surgeon. 

We are here to help you recognize the signs of impacted wisdom teeth and understand the options available for treating them. Here are three common warning signs that your wisdom teeth might be impacted: 

  1. Pain and swelling in the jaw: One of the earliest and most common signs of impacted wisdom teeth is pain and swelling in the jaw area. As wisdom teeth attempt to emerge from the gums, they can push against other teeth and the jawbone, causing discomfort. This can manifest as a dull, persistent ache or sharp, intermittent jaw pain. Swelling is often a result of inflammation and can cause the jaw to feel stiff and uncomfortable. If you are experiencing these symptoms, seek professional dental advice to determine if impacted wisdom teeth are the cause.
  2. Chronic bad breath or unpleasant taste: Impacted wisdom teeth can create a small pocket in the gumline, allowing bacteria to accumulate and breed. This can result in chronic bad breath or a persistent bad taste in the mouth. If you have a good oral hygiene routine, but the problem persists, it may indicate that your wisdom teeth are impacted. In such cases, it is essential to consult with a dental professional to determine the appropriate treatment.
  3. Difficulty opening your mouth all the way: Another common sign of impacted wisdom teeth is an inability to open your mouth all the way. As the third molars attempt to emerge, they can push against other teeth and crowd the jaw. This can result in pain and swelling, making it difficult to open your mouth fully. If you are having difficulty opening your mouth, there is a possibility that wisdom teeth are impacted and need to be addressed. 

Types of Wisdom Teeth Impaction

There are three types of impacted wisdom teeth: 

  1. Soft tissue impaction
  2. Partial bony impaction
  3. Complete bony impaction 

Soft tissue impactions occur when the wisdom teeth are only partially covered by gum tissue, while partial and complete bony impactions refer to how much of the tooth is covered by bone. Treatment options will vary depending on the type of impaction.

To learn more about wisdom tooth extraction and the risks associated with the procedure, read Wisdom Teeth Removal (Extraction)

Wisdom Teeth Removal in Boulder, CO

At Foley & Le Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons, we specialize in wisdom teeth removal. Dr. Benjamin Foley and Dr. Thao Le are highly experienced and knowledgeable in treating impacted wisdom teeth. We use state-of-the-art technology to ensure a safe and comfortable procedure for our patients, emphasizing excellent service and personalized care. 
If you are searching for wisdom tooth removal near me, call Foley & Le and speak to a member of our team about your needs. Call us today at (303) 444-2255 or complete the online booking form. We look forward to helping you achieve a healthy, beautiful smile!

Frequently Asked Questions

What Are Wisdom Teeth?

Wisdom teeth are the third molars located at the very back of your mouth and usually erupt between the ages of 17 to 25.

Do Wisdom Teeth Need To Be Removed?

Wisdom teeth do not always have to be removed. It is best to consult your dentist to determine whether or not removal is necessary for you, as it can depend on several factors, such as if there is sufficient room in your mouth and if the wisdom teeth are healthy.

How Do I Know if My Wisdom Teeth Need To Be Removed?

Typically, if your wisdom teeth are causing you pain or discomfort, it is a sign that they should be removed. Other signs to look out for include swelling, redness in the area around the wisdom tooth, tooth decay, and difficulty opening your mouth. Your dentist can also use X-rays to check the position of your wisdom teeth and determine whether or not they need to be removed. This x-ray should ideally be performed when you are 15 years old.

Do I See a Dentist or an Oral Surgeon for Wisdom Teeth Removal?

An oral surgeon is often the best option for wisdom teeth removal as they are specially trained to perform this type of surgery. Wisdom tooth removal is usually performed under IV anesthesia and this is a procedure that most general dentists are not able to provide. However, if your case is not overly complicated, it may be possible to have a dentist remove them as well. You should consult with both professionals and decide which one you feel more comfortable with before making a decision.

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