When the large wisdom teeth become impacted at the rear of your jaw, they can cause a number of problems. Many of these issues can cause discomfort for the patient, but it’s far from a typical toothache.
For example, wisdom teeth may be prone to developing abscesses, or infections in the tooth’s core, because it can be difficult to keep the area clear of bacteria with normal oral hygiene. Persistent pain is one symptom of an abscess. The wisdom teeth can also cause discomfort as they continue to attempt to erupt into a jaw that does not have enough room for them.
For patients who still have their wisdom teeth, pain at the rear of the jaw is reason to consult with an oral surgeon. It may signal a problem that requires the wisdom teeth to be extracted. Impacted wisdom teeth must be removed in a surgical procedure because bone may need to be removed before the oral surgeon can take out the teeth.
The oral surgeon will examine the teeth and take x-rays to confirm that the wisdom teeth are at the root of the problem and plan the course of treatment.
Some patients may postpone wisdom tooth extraction until they develop symptoms. Alternatively, many patients choose to be proactive about their wisdom teeth and have them removed before any problems develop. When taking the latter course, it is best for patients to undergo this extraction procedure before age 25. In young adults, the roots of the wisdom teeth are shorter and easier to remove. Younger patients also tend to heal more quickly following this surgery.
Wisdom tooth extraction is a routine procedure that is completed in our office. It takes just a few hours, and after a few days, patients have minimal disruption to the patient’s normal routine.
If you develop pain at the rear of your jaw, schedule an evaluation to see if your wisdom teeth should be removed. Delaying treatment may result in a more complicated condition, so call 703-425-5010 to set up an appointment as soon as possible.