The Nightly Grind
Wisdom Teeth and Your Teen
You’ve invested a lot of money in your teenager’s teeth, hoping to keep them straight and healthy for a lifetime. But the braces have come off and now your child is complaining of pain or swelling behind his molars. A quick trip to our Encino office reveals the problem: wisdom teeth. The third set of molars usually makes an appearance between the ages of 17 to 25. For 90% of patients, they need to be removed.
Do They Need to be Pulled or Not?
“But wait! I don’t want to remove healthy teeth!” you say. Unfortunately, with wisdom teeth, even though they are healthy, they can sometimes have a negative impact on the rest of your teeth.
Most of the time, there is no extra room in a teenager’s jaw for another set of teeth, so the third molars grow into the roots of healthy teeth, causing pain, cysts, swelling, and sometimes infection.
In some cases, the teeth only come in part of the way, making oral hygiene next to impossible. Bacteria can build up under the gum where part of the tooth is still buried, causing decay in that new tooth and the neighboring teeth!
It’s better to have four healthy, but impacted teeth removed than it is to risk the health and alignment of the rest of your child’s smile.
Consultations for Wisdom Teeth in Encino
Fortunately, it is easy to track your teen’s wisdom teeth. Regular dental appointments and imaging will allow you to find out how the teeth are developing and growing in. We can create a treatment plan with you that will have the least effect on your child’s orthodontic treatment and the best impact on their overall oral health.
Whether they are currently wearing braces, or only use a retainer at night, wisdom teeth don’t have to be a cause for concern. Call our Encino office today for an evaluation and consultation!
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