ZocdocAnswersShould I have my wisdom teeth removed?

Question

Should I have my wisdom teeth removed?

Now that I am in my middle twenties, my wisdom teeth have fully erupted and developed. I have received orthodontic treatment as a teenager before my wisdom teeth fully erupted. I am wondering if these large wisdom teeth may start pushing around some of the surrounding teeth that were gradually moved when I wore braces. I have a concern that maybe the wisdom teeth could somehow undo some of the orthodontic treatment that I've received for several years. I would also like to know if there are other good reasons for getting my wisdom teeth extracted.

Answer

It sounds like you have thought this through very carefully. You are correct that in many cases wisdom teeth are removed because of the way they interfere with the bite and alignment of the other teeth. Most people simply don't have the room in their mouths for the wisdom teeth. In most cases, wisdom teeth are actually removed by an oral surgeon before they even fully erupt through the gum line because they will start causing problems with the other teeth if they fully come in. It sounds like that is not the case for you, if they have fully erupted. In general the best person to advise you about whether these teeth really do need to come out because of a threat to your otherwise healthy bite and alignment is actually the orthodontist who performed your original braces treatment. He or she can assess your current bite and determine whether the wisdom teeth are causing a problem. It may be possible for you to keep the teeth without requiring oral surgery to remove them if your bite is fine. Alternatively, as you suggest, it might be better to remove them because they are starting to cause crowding problems. Your orthodontist is the best source of advise on this issue, and if the teeth do need to come out, he or she can refer you to the proper person to do that.

This answer is for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice.

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