Wisdom Tooth Extraction (Impaction)
Wisdom teeth usually begin to come in between the ages of 17 and 21. Dentists call these teeth third molars. They may become impacted because there's not enough room in your mouth for them. A wisdom tooth also might be trying to come in sideways. Or, it might be tilted in the jaw. An impacted tooth can be painless. You may not even realize it's there. However, when an impacted wisdom tooth tries to come in, the flap of gum on top of it can swell. This can hurt. You might feel pain in nearby teeth, or in the ear on that side of your face. Plus, food particles can get stuck near the gum flap.
This can lead to an infection called pericoronitis. If untreated, this infection can spread to the throat or into the neck. Impacted teeth can get cavities. An impacted tooth can push on the neighbouring molar. This can lead to tooth movement, decay or gum disease. It also can change the way your teeth come together. Rarely, impacted teeth can cause cysts or other growths in the jaw. If the tooth causes pain, is infected or interferes with nearby teeth, the usual treatment is to take it out. Extracting one tooth can take 5 to 30 minutes, depending on where it is.