For most people, during late teen to early adult years, the last set of teeth begins to grow in. This set of teeth is called the wisdom teeth. Causing headaches, soreness, and possible teeth shifting, wisdom teeth have a bad rapport. But are the rumours about wisdom teeth true? It may be possible that everything you thought you knew about wisdom teeth is incorrect. Here are five shocking myths about wisdom teeth:
- Myth: Everyone has wisdom teeth.
Some people never get their wisdom teeth! And some people may only get two of them. Everyone is different and not having wisdom teeth doesn’t necessarily indicate bad health.
- Myth: Everyone gets his or her wisdom teeth extracted.
Surprisingly enough, not everyone gets his or her wisdom teeth extracted, either. In fact, wisdom teeth should only be removed if the teeth aren’t properly positioned, putting pressure on adjacent teeth, or may cause future nerve damage.
- Myth: Extractions are deadly.
Some wisdom teeth removal skeptics question whether extractions may be detrimental to one’s health. In fact, it might just be the opposite. For some people wisdom teeth can cause major complications and failing to extract the teeth will cause more harm than good. It is important to know however, that like all procedures there are risks (like nerve damage). That is why it is important to only remove your wisdom teeth if absolutely necessary.
- Myth: You should wait as long as possible to remove your wisdom teeth.
If it is determined that your new wisdom teeth are impacted or causing damage, it is actually wise to do the very opposite: remove them sooner than later. For younger patients, a tooth’s bone density is still maturing and will be less dense, making the procedure and recovery time much easier. If there are no complications with the tooth, however, no extraction is necessary.
- Myth: Wisdom teeth only cause crooked teeth.
While one of the common complications with wisdom teeth is dental crowding, it is not the only issue. In fact, research shows that removing wisdom teeth solely to prevent dental shifting may not be an effective precaution. In addition to teeth crowding, some people may find that their new wisdom teeth cause pain and are difficult to clean. Some wisdom teeth may also be “impacted” (never erupting), resulting in necessary removal.
If you are worried about you or your child’s growing wisdom teeth and want to make sure there are no complications, be sure to stick to your routine dental appointments, including x-ray assessments, and ask your dentist.