The wisdom teeth, or third molars, are located at the back of the mouth, behind the second molars. They are the last teeth to develop in humans, generally by the end of the teenage years.
When an individual’s mouth is too small for the wisdom teeth to erupt, they will remain partially or completely impacted, meaning they are stuck inside the jaw bone. This is an abnormal condition that often calls for dental work to either remove the tooth or allow it to emerge normally.
Such problems will appear gradually from the time the tooth emerges and begins to affect the adjacent teeth and gums.
When teeth are extracted during the teenage years or in the early 20s, healing is easier and there are fewer complications. This is why it is often better to evaluate the situation and have the necessary work done at that time.
Other problems may also occur when wisdom teeth erupt, especially when they do not emerge completely. They include:
- inflammation of the adjacent gums
- development of cysts or benign tumours
It is better to see your dentist before the development of wisdom teeth causes damage or problems.