27 September 2021
Wisdom teeth pain is a common dental problem that typically occurs in the late teens or early 20s as these additional back teeth begin to emerge.
Sometimes wisdom teeth discomfort is temporary – part of our natural oral development, like babies going through teething.
In many cases though, wisdom teeth don’t erupt through the gum properly. This can cause painful symptoms that may trigger multiple complications resulting in even more discomfort.
This type of wisdom teeth pain won’t go away on its own. The only solution is extraction, which brings immediate, permanent relief.
Pain associated with problem wisdom teeth is often caused by infection and inflammation around an impacted tooth.
Wisdom tooth impaction happens when the teeth get completely or partially stuck in the gum. Infection occurs as bacteria accumulate around these areas. Inflammation can follow as the body’s natural immune system response to infection.
Specific, painful wisdom teeth issues include:
- Abscess. A wisdom tooth abscess is a build-up of pus in crevices caused by a partially erupted tooth. This can result in jaw bone damage and tooth loss. The infection may also spread to the brain or heart – potentially life-threatening situations.
- Damage to neighbouring teeth. If wisdom teeth push against adjacent molars, it can damage these teeth or increase risk of infection in the area.
- Gum inflammation. It’s difficult to keep partially-erupted wisdom teeth clean. This increases the risk of a gum infection called pericoronitis, which can be extremely painful.
- Sinus problems. Roots of upper wisdom teeth can compress sinuses. This can lead to congestion and inflammation of these mucus-lined cavities. You may get headaches as well.
- Cyst – a fluid-filled sac that can damage the jaw, teeth and nerves.
While it’s never a good idea to ignore toothache in general, it’s particularly risky to dismiss wisdom teeth pain. As we’ve seen, problem wisdom teeth can result in serious complications such as an abscess or cyst or severe gum inflammation.
A further issue if you don’t have these teeth extracted is a greater likelihood of getting cavities. Partially impacted wisdom teeth are more vulnerable to tooth decay. They often emerge at a skewed angle or in an awkward position, making it difficult to reach them with your toothbrush.
Wisdom teeth can also cause teeth crowding. An impacted wisdom tooth exerts strong pressure on the tooth next to it, and this can trigger a chain reaction of teeth jamming against each other.
If you ignore wisdom teeth pain in your late teens – when the roots are still growing – extraction when you’re older may be a more complex procedure. Wisdom teeth removal becomes more difficult once the roots are fully developed. Recovery time is also faster in younger patients.
If you’re experiencing pain from wisdom teeth and you suspect they’re not emerging through your gums properly, you should talk to a dentist as soon as possible.
Prompt wisdom teeth extraction not only brings instant relief from pain but can avoid more painful dental issues in the future. You can get in touch with wisdom teeth removal experts at Wisdom Teeth Sydney right now.