A wisdom tooth is also called a Third Molar. Each person has four wisdom teeth (lower right, lower left, upper right, and upper left). However, all four wisdom teeth may not have erupted in your mouth yet. One or several may be submerged under the gums, just poking through the gums, or possibly impacted. The age in which wisdom teeth erupt through the gums and into place is extremely variable. On average, this occurs between the ages of 17 and 21. However, if there is not adequate space or the wisdom tooth is growing in the wrong direction, the wisdom tooth may never fully erupt into the correct place.
Wisdom teeth are typically ignored until they start bothering a person. However, when they start hurting, the discomfort can quickly and intensely increase. Thus, you should immediately contact your dentist if you are possibly experiencing pain from a wisdom tooth.
What causes wisdom tooth pain?
Numerous sources can be responsible for your discomfort:
- Large cavity: A wisdom tooth may have a large cavity. In this situation, the tooth’s nerve may become irritated, causing pain.
- Inflamed gums: A wisdom tooth may be poking out of the gums with a little flap of gum tissue covering a portion of the tooth. In this case, food and debris may accumulate under this flap of gum tissue. This debris may cause the gum to become inflamed and even infected, causing pain. The medical term for this situation is Pericorinitis.
- Swelling: An infection may develop around the wisdom tooth, causing swelling that requires immediate medical attention.
- Broken tooth: A piece of your wisdom tooth may have broken or chipped off, causing discomfort.
What relieves wisdom tooth pain?
The recommended treatment depends on the situation and the source of the discomfort. For some people, a wisdom tooth has grown in straight and is important for chewing. In this situation, your dentist will try to treat the tooth and restore it to health. If the wisdom tooth is poorly angulated or not growing in properly, an extraction may be recommended. If the tooth is highly infected, antibiotics and pain medication are often prescribed to reduce the infection and discomfort.
About our office and emergency dental care:
At Lissauer Dental, we truly understand the pain you are experiencing during your dental emergency. We will bend over backwards to accommodate you if you need immediate care. Our office policy to see patients with dental emergencies the day that we are called, even if you are new to our practice. So, please do not hesitate to call, and we will be here for you.