Wisdom teeth are the last molars to appear in the mouth and can cause problems if they are not cared for properly. From our dental clinic Medident we would like to explain how many wisdom teeth exist, from the upper to the lower molars, and also how to identify if they are causing problems in your dental health.
What are wisdom teeth?
Wisdom teeth, also known as third molars, are the last molars to erupt in the mouth. They usually appear between the ages of 17 and 25 and are located at the end of each side of the upper and lower jaw. Although some people have enough space in their mouth to accommodate these teeth, in many cases they can become impacted inside the jawbone and can cause pain, swelling and infection if not treated in time.
How many wisdom teeth do we have?
People usually have four wisdom teeth, two in the upper jaw and two in the lower jaw. However, the number of wisdom teeth can vary from person to person and some people may have fewer or even no wisdom teeth, while others may have more than four.
Why do some people have no wisdom teeth?
In some cases, wisdom teeth may not erupt. The number of wisdom teeth each person has depends on factors such as genetics and the evolution of the jaw throughout the history of the human species. As humans have evolved and changed their diet, their jaws have become smaller in size, which means there is not enough room for wisdom teeth to develop.
Types of wisdom teeth
As we have seen, wisdom teeth are located in the lower jaw and in the upper jaw, so they are differentiated into these two types:
Upper wisdom teeth
Upper wisdom teeth are those located in the upper part of the mouth. Within this type, there are three possible ways in which wisdom teeth can develop:
Erupted upper wisdom teeth
Erupted upper wisdom teeth are those that have fully grown into the mouth, without causing any problems.
Tilted upper wisdom teeth
Tilted upper wisdom teeth are those that have not grown in a straight position and may be crooked or rotated.
Impacted upper wisdom teeth
Impacted upper wisdom teeth are those that have not been able to erupt through the gums and are trapped under the gums or in the bone.
Lower wisdom teeth
Lower wisdom teeth are located in the lower part of the mouth. Within this type, there are also three possible ways in which wisdom teeth can develop:
Erupted lower wisdom teeth
As with upper wisdom teeth, erupted wisdom teeth are those that develop completely in the mouth without generating any complications.
Tilted lower wisdom teeth
Wisdom teeth that are tilted are those that have grown in turned or crooked.
Impacted lower wisdom teeth
Impacted wisdom teeth remain trapped under the gums or bone.
Why is it important to know what type of wisdom teeth you have?
Knowing what type of wisdom teeth you have is important so that you can take appropriate preventive and/or treatment measures if necessary. For example, if you have impacted wisdom teeth, you may need to have them surgically extracted to avoid problems such as pain, infection, decay or dental alignment problems.
On the other hand, if you have erupted or tilted wisdom teeth, you may require additional monitoring and care to make sure they are not causing dental conditions. In addition, knowing the type of wisdom teeth you have can help your dentist plan future dental treatment more effectively.
Symptoms of wisdom tooth problems
Everyone may experience different symptoms when they have problems with their wisdom teeth. Some of the most common symptoms include
Inflammation or pressure on the gums around the wisdom teeth can cause pain in the jaw. The pain can be mild or sharp and may be worse when chewing or opening the mouth.
Toothache is another common symptom when wisdom teeth erupt. The pain may be persistent or intermittent and may be made worse by chewing or applying pressure to the affected tooth.
Inflammation of the gums around wisdom teeth can cause swelling and redness in the affected area. The swelling can also make it difficult to open your mouth fully.
Difficulty opening the mouth
Swelling or pain in the gums surrounding the wisdom teeth can make it difficult to open your mouth fully. In some cases, the jaw may also feel stiff or painful.
Bleeding gums from wisdom teeth can be a sign of inflammation or infection in the area.
Impacted wisdom teeth can cause infection in the affected area. Symptoms of infection may include fever, severe pain, swelling, redness and pus.
Tooth sensitivity can also be a symptom of wisdom teeth. Sensitivity can occur when the root of the affected tooth is exposed.
Wisdom tooth pain may radiate from the jaw to the head and may be persistent or intermittent.
Treatment for wisdom teeth
Of course, in dentistry there are different treatments to alleviate the problems caused by wisdom teeth.
Wisdom teeth extraction
The most common treatment is extraction. If the teeth are impacted or tilted, extraction may be more complicated and require surgery. In this case, local anaesthesia or sedation may be used to minimise pain and discomfort during the procedure. After the procedure, it is very important to follow the dentist’s instructions to ensure proper recovery.
Pain and swelling relief
If wisdom teeth are causing pain or swelling, over-the-counter pain relievers, such as ibuprofen, can be taken to relieve pain and swelling. Cold compresses can also be applied to the affected area to reduce swelling.
If pain or swelling persists, it is important to consult a dentist for diagnosis and treatment.
Preventing problems with wisdom teeth
Each person can take preventive measures to avoid wisdom tooth pain by maintaining good oral hygiene and seeing a dentist regularly:
Maintaining good oral hygiene
To prevent problems with wisdom teeth it is important to maintain good oral hygiene. This includes brushing your teeth twice a day, flossing daily and rinsing your mouth with an antimicrobial mouthwash. It also helps to avoid foods and drinks that can cause cavities and other dental problems.
Regular dental visits
Regular dental visits are essential to prevent and detect problems with wisdom teeth. During visits, the dentist can take x-rays to determine if wisdom teeth are causing disruption to the jaw and can recommend appropriate treatment to avoid future complications.
If you are experiencing any of these symptoms or need treatment for wisdom teeth, call us, at Medident we have a team of dentists who are experts in wisdom teeth removal as well as other techniques for the relief of your symptoms.
Don’t hesitate to contact us through the form below or by phone to schedule an appointment. We are here to help you maintain good dental health and a radiant smile.