Based in Louisville, Kentucky, Christopher “Chris” C. Babcock, DMD guides a dental practice that provides services such as dental extractions and wisdom teeth removal. Dr. Christopher C. Babcock is well-versed in growth patterns of wisdom teeth, or the third set of molars that grow on both the top and bottom of the mouth.
Typically, these teeth erupt between the ages of 17 and 21, long after the other permanent teeth have come in. In some cases, the third molars can erupt at a sideways angle, sometimes preventing them from emerging through the gums. Whether completely trapped below the gum line or partially erupting, the impacted teeth can lead to many dental challenges, including cysts, gum disease, and increased tooth decay risk.
Wisdom teeth that erupt in a functional, upright position should not cause pain and are generally not targeted for extraction, unless they are hard to keep clean. However, impacted teeth should be proactively extracted before they cause larger issues. Usually, it’s recommended to perform this extraction before the age of 20, as the roots will be less developed. The symptoms of impacted wisdom teeth include redness and irritation of the gums behind the second molars. Also, be aware of the pain in other areas, such as the ears and eyes, and a dull ache near the back of the jaw.